‘Don’t try! I don’t want you to try. You just have to see what everyone else sees.’ This instruction was often heard during my training. Whenever we used the word ‘try‘ we would be very firmly challenged. Today’s post addresses a line from the entry on this day, 11 years ago:
‘I have already begun to identify areas of myself which need alteration. What I lack, however, is the awareness of the situation‘.
There is a difference between knowing and seeing for oneself. In my training I worked with a group of people whose support for one another extended to giving their feedback on each other’s behaviour. It was an essential part of our training. Very often, the feedback was difficult to hear, but without it we would never have had a complete picture of who we are.
We all have blind spots with our own behaviour: things we do, but of which we are blissfully unaware. If a number of people all tell me the same thing about myself – something which I am not seeing – then it is better for me to listen to what they have to say.
The next step is to see for myself what they are seeing. This is vital because if I can do that then change is already happening. It’s that simple. But it isn’t easy. When we first hear the feedback, we set about blocking it, denying it, or justifying our behaviour. Rather than do this, we should be quiet, because if the feedback is being given correctly, then it is a gift and we would do well to acknowledge it as such.
Once we have received the feedback, there may be a tendency to be embarrassed, ashamed or to get down about it, or even angry with ourselves. Again, there is no need. Just relax, smile and know that soon the chance will present itself for you to see what everyone else has been seeing for weeks, months, even years.
When that happens, you can smile again, because you know the transformation has already begun. Without even trying.