How often do you check your oil and tyres?
When it comes to maintaining ‘things’ like vehicles and machinery we usually have some form of a process such as a warrant of fitness check or a reminder to pause at a certain number of hours or kilometres. From a health perspective, these checks happen regularly for check-ups, immunisations and shots, blood tests, checks on this and x-rays and scans on that. I ask you to consider also, how many thousand words have you spoken since you last had a check-up or review on what you’ve said or how you've said it? How often do you stop and reflect on how you're being you? And are you being the best you you can be for the benefit of others?
We’re often so involved in being who we are that we're sometimes not aware how we’re being for others. Think of the last face-to-face conversation you had today and imagine, if you were the person you were speaking to, how would you perceive you in that particular interaction? How would you feel about the conversation you’ve just had with you? This is often referred to as putting yourself in the shoes of the other person, or in NLP terms, second position. It's also referred to as emotional intelligence.
Emotional intelligence is the capacity to be aware of how we are being in the presence of others and exercising our ability to control and express our emotions, thoughts and feelings carefully and empathetically. This usually involves objective reflection on our behaviour, and asking ourselves some useful questions such as, what could I have done differently? What actions could have given me the outcome I wanted to achieve? How would I feel if I was the person on the receiving end of my conversation? How will I do things differently next time? My real question is, you might remember when you checked your oil and tyres last, however when did you last check on how you are being in the presence of others? That is, when did you check in on your emotional intelligence?
Maintaining and caring for things with a precise timing schedule ensures that our ‘material things’ continue to serve us efficiently and effectively with minimal down time, meaning we get to where we need to be and produce what we need to produce, with minimal delay or interruption. Are you getting to where you need to be and generating the kinds of conversations that you’d like to, in an efficient, effective way and with minimal down time or re-work?
If you’re thinking it may be time to pause and review, you might like to consider booking in for a maintenance check. Take a look at our one-day Essential Communication Skills workshop. Short, to the point and focused on how to create respectful relationships and productive people connections, we look at how you do what you’re already doing automatically, at home and at work.
Sometimes, a small tweak here, a top up of this or a reminder of that combined with a little time to pause, review and reflect, is all we need to move forward and create a more understanding and respectful self, for ourselves.