Do you always look for the hole in the ceiling?
Are you the type of person who looks for whats wrong or the person who looks for whats right? That is what I mean by asking “Do you always look for the hole in the ceiling?”. Basically we keep on noticing the small hole in the ceiling and keep getting irritated by it and forget to see that the rest of ceiling is beautifully done. We forget to appreciate that we have a ceiling!!
While working with a coaching client recently, the client kept complaining about how a particular team is always like this, the other team is always like that!! I asked him the ceiling question and having understood the question, he sat back and reflected on it. After few minutes, he said, Rajat you are right. I don’t see the individuals in the team as individuals. I use the general traits (good or bad) which have been associated with the team to each individual of that team and then behave around all of them similarly. That might include shouting at them or sending aggressive emails. I never look at how this person can be different from the team.
I was impressed and happy to have such a client :). Somebody who can actually reflect back and be truthful about it and come out with meaningful thoughts. Most of us don’t even spend time in thinking how each person is different and how beautiful they all are. We keep on finding “what’s wrong” in them and keep telling them about it. And it does not only impact them, but impacts us as well. When we have to deal with people we perceive as “very wrong”, we are irritated, our mind goes into over drive and we loose focus on our work. What for? What are we trying to achieve?
So every time you are dealing with somebody and you find yourself irritated, do this:
- Take a step back for a moment (basically take a pause)
- Tell yourself, that this is not a team standing in front of you but an individual
- Reflect on one thing that the person is good at. Find the strength in the person.
- Tell the other person about their strength and ask them how they have used or plan to use that strength in the current situation
- Co-create on what to do in this situation from now on…
You will find yourself happy and contended over time once you start doing this. Knowing that you are working with people who have strengths and the positive environment you are creating, will do wonders for your inner peace!!
As I keep on saying…always remember “You have the choice!!!”
Image courtesy “JustShutter” at Freedigitalphotos.net