Are you someone who is curious about life, about the people around you and the way they navigate their lives?
I have an avid curiosity for what it means to be human. I’m thirsty for knowledge not just from a theory book but from speaking with people one on one to understand what drives them.
You see we all have these moments in our lives where we have faced challenges and obstacles. Each of us has these moments where its either shaped who we have become in good or bad ways.
It either works for us or doesn’t and what I know about the many many people I have spoken to over many many years, I’ve tried to show them a new perspective, a different lens over how they have perceived these moments.
How do you turn something that doesn’t work for you to something that does work for you?
It’s just your point of view. If you limit your point of view it can only ever be one way of looking at something. What if you realised every moment was a learning experience in this journey called life.
What did you learn? Have you learnt how to be more patient? How to be more generous of heart? More kind? More connected? More empathetic?
Why I say these particular phrases is because I’ve been there and that’s exactly the way in which it unfolded for me. You might use different terminology and phraseology but what did you learn about yourself?
My parents fought a lot growing up. Little did I realise at the time how that would impact upon me as an adult. I’m conflict and confrontation averse which means I back myself out of a conversation if I even perceive it’s not going to go well here.
I just can’t see the point in arguing with anyone. In many ways this a good trait to have but I also have resentment because I’m incapable in the moment to say how I really feel or communicate what I really want to say to the other person.
In many ways it’s debilitating and disabling. But because I know this about myself I try to become more aware of those moments and invite myself to observe them. Being an observer means I watch it unfold and break down what’s going on - the process of my thinking.
What I’ve discovered about myself is that I’m afraid of where a conversation might go. But hanging in the conversation for just five more minutes is a strategy that’s as suggest to me many years ago. You can validate another person by acknowledging what they’ve said. You are listening for understanding and asking if how you’ve interpreted what they’ve said is correct.
This gives you space and time to think clearly and logically. To slow down your heart rate in that moment. To cultivate a calm mind. To find what it is you really want to say honouring your own values as well as the person before you.
We have so much in common with another as human beings. Sometimes it’s just about being more interested in another human being beyond the surface, going deeper and beyond the superficial.
It’s about how can I find out what drives or motivates or inspires this individual? Managers can sometimes do this well. But you don’t have to be a manager to master this.
What I know to be true of us all is we are seeking belonging and connection, psychologically safe spaces to express ourselves and to be understood.
Not many of us had great role models in our parents or guardians but over time we have collected role models, teachers, managers, colleagues, celebrities even, authors of biographies or fiction that gave us characters to aspire to.
People who we saw how they operate in the world and we said I want to be just like that.
It might seem idealistic and simplistic but really have a look at all the people in your life who have played a part in shaping who you have become, even the people who didn’t quite get it right in the moment because they were operating from what they knew. Remember we do all have the best intentions but sometimes it doesn’t always land the way we intended.
I’m a parent I stuff that role up all the time.
But I equally know I said to myself I’ll never be like that I won’t be a parent like them. Having heard myself speak realising, I have turned out just like them.
or there’s a way not to manage or I’ll make sure I never speak to others the way I was just spoken to.
There are people in our lives who get it right and people who don’t get it right. Become aware and have a look. With the people who don’t quite get it right, there is still a lesson to learn for us, for ourselves as individuals.
This is where you’ll realise just how much e all have in common as human beings. We are flawed and that’s ok. We’re also very very amazing, capable and surprisingly resilient.
This list we have of things in common is never ending. The more I speak to individuals coaching them, learning about them, the more I discover about myself and realise just how much we all have in common.
Hi my name is Angela. I have loved writing since I was able to hold a pencil in my hand. I soon learnt I had a gift of connecting with my ancestors through writing before my 30th birthday.