I think I have finally heard what Fierce Conversations is saying.
I just finished listening to Webinar: Transformational Idea #2 by Susan Scott. It was exactly what I needed to hear. It told me exactly how to be the kind of person who leaves a "positive emotional wake", the kind of person who can achieve the goals I have outlined for myself:
(1) View/treat everyone as my equal (no exceptions).
(2) Attitude is key.
(3) Invite/consider multiple perspectives with the goal of being influenced, NOT to influence others.
(4) Put the greater good first.
(5) Be present in every conversation, "prepared to be nowhere else".
(6) Speak the truth with good intent.
(7) It is not important to be right.
(8) Say less, listen more.
(all credit for the above goes to Susan Scott of http://www.fierceinc.com/)
As I listened, it dawned on me that my unhappiness with my past/current jobs is partially of my own doing. I had a terrible attitude. I strove to be right and I was closed to other perspectives. I was never present in the conversation. I thought only of myself. I did absolutely nothing to better my situation and I probably made it worse. I'm still doing it - placing blame, avoiding honesty, skimming through my interactions with my co-workers.
I have negatively affected my relationships when I talk and don't listen, when I speak only to be right, when I assume that someone else will benefit from what I say without being prepared to benefit from something they say. Many of my relationships are distant and impersonal because I do not engage people "on a deep level". Even my most important relationships have suffered from my one-sided conversations. How did I get so defensive and selfish?
I tend to be a private person with most people and quite open and free with the few people I grow to trust. I think I have allowed my private tendencies to prevent me from connecting with people. Engaging someone does not mean sharing personal details. It means being open, it means listening with no agenda and no internal dialogue. It means being present and respectful of someone I consider my equal.
It's time to get off my high horse.
I have the power to change my situation. I do not need to change other people. I need to change me. I said this in another post, but it hasn't been so clear until now. When I wrote it before, I was not focused on the goals above. It was a more wishy-washy, "I need to be a better person" sense. I know what I need to do now.
It's humbling to suddenly hear someone I admire telling me that I haven't actually been living the values I profess to have. Hopefully I heard the truth this time.
This is the beginning. My blog is a lot of talking, so if you comment, I promise I will listen. Please forgive me if I have previously cheapened our relationship. I invite you to join me in improving our relationship, "one conversation at a time".
Thank you, Susan.