In the last few years I have been in situations where I am with someone who has exhibited the same behaviour as me, not a good behaviour, I look on in horror as I have a ‘ahah’ moment. This has happened many times in the last few years, but never happened before that point. The first time was a women who came in for an interview. She was gregarious and laughed loudly at her own jokes. I froze thinking is that the impact I have? Wow there is work to do! I have toned down that side of my personality and it has made a difference.
Yesterday I was listening to a colleague vent on the same topic he has being going on about for weeks, repeating themselves and as I listened I knew that is me. Wow is that the impact I have… I have some serious work to do. I am still reflecting on the impact and how I can change my behaviour. We all vent, but repetitive vents are time consuming for the receiver and show no leadership or recognition of failure. When we vent, what I am observing is where we fail to influence. Influence is a key skill for any leader. So now when I catch myself venting or repeating frustrations, to take a breath, ask what am I going to do differently no one is interested in your venting!
What I don’t understand is why I have never noticed this until relatively recently. My reflection is that I am now centred in others and not myself and that transition has made the difference. When we are centred in ourselves we are not actively listening or present, that shift has allowed me to listen and be present, leading to another level of awareness and some of the best leanings.
Self awareness is a lifelong journey.