Sunday, July 10, 2016

We Will Not All Get Along, All The Time - And That's Okay! (learning to accept others)

Sometimes we go into projects or tasks with the expectation that everything must be perfect, or that everyone will agree on all the points and topics. Unless you have some fairy dust and a magic wand, chances are good - very good - that it's not going to go exactly like that.

Strong people have strong - and different opinions - and that is OKAY. It's good to have alternative input and thoughts and feedback - but some people get so bent out of shape if things do not go exactly the way they might have planned them. So what?When respect for one another meets open and honest communication, coupled with the ability to let go of one's ego, then the sky is the limit!
  • Practice pulling back from the conversation once in a while. 
  • The more often you try this, the easier it will get I promise! 
  • Pause and take a deep breath. 
  • Now, listen to someone else speak, and HEAR what they are saying. 
  • It's not always necessary to jump back in with a reply! 
  • Let the discussion go it's own way while giving others the space to talk. 

There are a lot of folks who who believe they have what it takes to successfully lead, encourage and motivate a group of individuals. Sometimes, people think that just because they talk loudly or "have the best ideas" that is what's needed to "be a leader". It's not. IF you are able to become quiet and just listen and hear an exchange of ideas, you may begin to notice that each person is able to contribute more.

So what happens AFTER you sit back and listen and then still decide you don't like the outcome, or what is being suggested? Sometimes it's okay to have different opinions. Far too often I believe we fall into the trap of not wanting the fundraiser to be on THAT night, simply because we may think we know better than the rest? But it's not all about you and sometimes other people need to be heard and listened to as well.

Remember to keep your eye on the prize, the final product which you all are working to accomplish. That's the goal, not just being able to brag "I did this". When working with others it's not you, or her, or him. It's a combination of ideas; a textured pattern of concepts and contributions; a rainbow of thoughts and input.

Don't believe me? Look around at a successful meeting you may have attended, perhaps somewhere that you were the new person to the group, or just visiting as an outsider. Were you impressed by anything that took place? Did some people speak less and yet still commanded respect, or maybe they "asked" others for suggestions rather than just talking themselves?

The most successful people I have ever known to be leaders did not demand, or dictate, or tell others what to do. They asked. They were confident enough in their team and the sum of everyone working together as a whole, that they didn't need to speak loudly or attempt to rule by being the sole voice. They requested the assistance of others and in turn, the rest gave more than they were asked for.

Try it. Try letting go of yourself and your ideas once in a while. Allow others to be heard and valued. Lower your voice and speak less, and see what kind of reactions you observe. Leadership is about guiding the team yes, but it's not about ordering the team to do this, or do that. It's a project of togetherness and respect.

"Life on Delmarva" • #delmarvausa