November 1, 2011
"What comes out of your mouth is as important as what you put in it." - Dan Millman, Way of the Peaceful Warrior
I recently attended a conference to further my applications and understanding of the Relationship Awareness® Tools that I use with my clients in building teams, focusing on personal and professional growth in communications and conflict skills. It was a fabulous opportunity to network with other facilitators from around the world, to build my brand and reputation inside my community. Likely you have these same opportunities during the year. I suspect you also have had the experience of bumping into the same attendee over and over, despite the number of people in attendance. Well, I certainly did! This person's story was consistent - whether in conversation with me, with speakers, or in group discussions - "I have my own business, but I can't apply these learnings because I have no clients. The economy is not good enough for me to find work." Over and over I heard this story.
I felt her determination to be right. It's our human condition that values being right over being enriched, or being open to another way. This story was a very safe place, and I wanted to hold a mirror up and suggest this person look at what this tale was spinning in their world. I didn't.
Instead I offered a simple coaching question, what will you say when you have clients? Tell that story now. She was silent, and we didn't talk again during the conference. Perhaps I got her thinking, perhaps I turned her off. Powerful questions can do that. That's what I love about partnering with people who are looking to maximize their potential - they explore powerful questions.
What story are you telling? How can you look in the mirror and see a different possibility?