I’m beginning to think BrightSide and I could kick off a side business offering alternative mediation.  We’ve had a bit of success in the area (a very little bit but hey, any success is better than none, right?) and just might have some skills to offer to the public at large. 

BrightSide’s strengths might lie in more traditional mediation.  He’s all about the feelings and seeing each other’s perspectives and active listening and such…the whole “sit down in a room and put it all out there until we’ve got it resolved” approach.  It’s a perfectly valid system and, frankly, largely responsible for our successes.

Me?  Well, I’ve been considering some alternative approaches to the field.  Clients would probably need to sign some sort of waiver, but I think the ideas below are worth a try.

1.  Have you considered taking separate vacations?  A lot of these under-the-skin irritants can be resolved simply by having a week of rest, relaxation, and respite.

2.  I know you’re here to pay a pretty penny for my mediation skills, but in all honesty practically anything can be solved with rock/paper/scissors.  I can teach you to count it down properly, though.

3.  Need the more spiritual vibe?  All right.  Take off your shoes and sit on our shag rug.  We shall close our eyes, touch pinkies, and meditate on the source of all anxiety.

4.  I’m sensing aggression and prescribe five minutes of Hungry Hungry Hippo.  GO!

5.  All right, in the spirit of cooperation, on odd dates George will be right.  On even dates Alice will.  Voilà.  Problem solved.

6.  Schedule mediation for 12:30pm then deny all food and drink until the issue is settled.

7.  Okay, everyone give me $200.  Yes, everyone.  I’ll wait… There.  Now you have a common enemy.  Bond over that.

8.  Frankly, Bubbles, I think you’re full of shit.  You mean no one’s told you that already?  Oh.  Well then, let me be the first.

9.  I deeply believe in the therapeutic practice of pillow fights.

10.  Punching bags are passé, but bubble soccer?  Giant sumo wrestler suits?  Kiddie pools filled with gelatin?  All excellent ways to burn off both aggression and calories.