“If only you can see how others see you” – me
One of my unique gifts is that I see the best in others. Always have, always will. This sometimes gets me into trouble because it makes me vulnerable to being taken advantage of when my trust is misplaced. However, this is one of the skills I value the most, since as a coach, I provide a positive and wise reflection of others.
Reflection, whether it comes from external sources or is directed inward, is so incredibly important.
It’s really important.
Did I say it was important?
I believe reflection is the primary method by which we gain self-awareness not only in terms of how others view us, but also with respect to how we view ourselves and the world. By having an understanding of both our inner and outer world we can integrate the two and understand how one affects the other. The better we understand that relationship, the more successfully we can navigate our world.
For example, I know there are times that I carry my emotional baggage just below my consciousness. I can become bristly and edgy without realizing it, and then become confused when others do not respond to me in the manner that I expected. Of course, I might blame them because I felt I was approaching them with openness and positivity, not realizing that my garbage was bleeding into the interaction. Knowing the limits of my self-awareness means that when I don’t get the response I expected, I have to wonder if I’m bringing my baggage into the interaction. Hmmm!
In other words, I need both external and internal reflection to understand the me:world interface. My reflective practice is key to helping me become better at understanding myself. Being open to the verbal and nonverbal feedback of others, without judgment, also helps me to understand how I’m influencing the world.
Others often say they don’t have time for a reflective practice. That’s the equivalent of saying that I don’t have time to talk to my spouse or partner every day. YOU are the most important person in your life, and if you fail to listen to yourself, then you are cutting off the most important person in your world. If you did that to your partner, don’t be surprised if your relationship fails. If you do that to yourself, don’t be surprised if you fail, or at least struggle. A lot.
Don’t you think you owe it to yourself to give yourself 15 minutes per day?
You deserve it.
You should see the glorious person that I see in you.