“Soul is about authenticity. Soul is about finding the things in your life that are real and pure.” ― John Legend
I was raised to believe that it was most important to be efficient and productive and to keep my feelings to myself.
This belief system was reinforced when I entered the world of business.
The less I focused on my personal concerns… the more I checked my soul at the door…the more praise and awards I received for how ‘dedicated’ I was to the goals of the company.
I was promoted to managerial positions and my managerial style was to help those on my teams also put aside their personal feelings and ‘get on’ with the work at hand…like soul-less machines.
Until one very important day I was stopped in my tracks by something one of my co-workers said to me about what they felt about me.
It stung sharply because it rang true within me and it was the day I changed my life so I could fully live.
What my co-worker said to me in a fit of frustration before storming away was “We all respect you but we don’t like you.”
My first reaction was to comfort myself by saying silently, “I don’t care if you like me, in business it’s all about respect.”
And, yet my heart hurt deeply. I cared about each one of my co-workers … about their personal trials, their families, their ambitions. How could they know that and still not like me?
That’s when I realized that there was no way they could know I cared. I had not ever allowed time for true, authentic conversations between us. All we ever discussed were the projects…not our feelings about the projects or anything else in our lives. I had always thought it was a waste of time to discuss anything other than the work at hand.
Was it possible that there could be a way to balance efficiency and productivity with authentic caring… a way to be a whole person even at work?
This question opened up a world of possible scenarios and explorations.
I started slowly by replacing giving instructions and directives with questions asked my co-workers…questions related to their feelings about our department goals and projects…questions about their activities outside of work…questions with a sincere desire to know what they were thinking and feeling.
And, a funny thing happened along the way.
Projects were being completed faster and with more fun and joy.
As I came alive our department came to life, too. And it was noticed by other departments and managers.
Instead of sacrificing efficiency we gained comradery and a sense of fulfillment.
Now to be fully honest, I am sharing that some members of the team who were not comfortable sharing their feelings did move on to other departments or other companies.
That made it possible to fill those positions with people who enjoyed bringing their full selves to work each day…who sincerely chose to be authentic with their feelings…and who put caring before simply ‘getting on’ with the work at hand.
And, those years of putting people’s feelings before projects had an unexpected pay-off.
I discovered that my true calling was actually to be of support in helping others to aCHIeve their personal goals…which led to leaving the corporate world and creating a personal success coaching practice.
My greatest joy is supporting my clients to learn how to create their own Strategic Attraction Plan to attract people who encourage authenticity and alignment in their relationships…whether friends, co-workers, team members and/or co-workers/ team members who also become friends.
If you want to know more about how to create a Strategic Attraction Plan of your own, check out my tips at https://www.goforyeschallenge.com/?m=ditchyourgrind
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Go For Yes Success Strategist
Speaker, Best-Selling Author
CEO, Chi-To-Be!, LLC