When I engage with clients it’s encouraging to hear them say, for example, that they want to:
- Be Competent
- Make Good Decisions
- Be Resilient
- Feel Less Stressed
- Be Productive
- Be Composed
- Engage Employees
- Be Action-Oriented
It bodes two questions, though: 1) How do you know to what degree you’re meeting these objectives? And, 2) Once you know, how do you improve the needed growth areas?
Let’s focus on the first question.
It’s hard to be objective about ourselves – really hard. Apparently, there’s evidence that there are actually neurological hindrances to our being able to view me objectively. The bias is almost always toward self. So, it seems that it’s much easier for us to see others’ negative behaviors and their impact than our own. Not surprising, I suppose.
So how can I get more objective about me?
The 360 is a powerful place to start. As tough as it can be to hear, sometimes, the 360 can be a goldmine! Really, it’s all about data:
- What do those who know me the best think about how I’m showing up? What’s working? What’s not?
- How would they rate me in those things that I aspire to?
- What recommendations do they have for me?
It’s not lost on me that others’ views can also be skewed. Their natural anxiousness about their relationship with you or a specific issue can cloud things. And, your own anxiousness can block your receptivity to feedback. Ultimately it’s your responsibility to accept or reject the feedback. And can you do that objectively and with great intention? Here are some pointers on how you might do that:
- Calm yourself down (i.e. deep breaths from the diaphragm)
- Focus on openly receiving the data
- Steer away from blame (i.e. going on the proverbial witch-hunt for who said what)
- Limit the excuses
- Process what’s been said (especially if it’s been identified by more than two others)
- Take what’s useful and use it
Checking in with some of your
trusted advisors could hold the answer!