Making connections with colleagues is and ongoing part of creation great relationships.
Have you ever had the experience of working with someone who seemed perfect? Nothing seemed to ruffle their feathers or get in their way?
They’ve got that perfect ‘shiny exterior’ and yet you can’t seem to really get to know them?
They seem somehow insincere and never quite reachable, never vulnerable.
They’re willing to talk about your vulnerabilities, even offer advice. Yet, they don’t open up about theirs. Frustrating? At best. Crazy-making at the worst.
Everyone over the age of fifteen (maybe ten, but just to be fair!) knows that life is full of challenges. We can’t control many of the situations we encounter in life, even though we can control how we respond to them. Those responses shape and inform who we are and how we show up in the world, makes us who we are.
Mistakes are okay
Truthfully, though, our biggest learning often comes out of our ‘worst’ mistakes – regardless of how we handle those situations in the moment. And, we’ve all been through tough times. Some big, some small, some life changing. That impact is different for all of us. Though, common vulnerability is what makes us human. It’s where our compassion is born and it’s where it lives and develops.
When we share that vulnerability is when we become multi-dimensional and real. To everyone in our lives, our clients and colleagues included. I’m not suggesting that you open up at every opportunity or that you tell your deepest secrets or greatest fears. I am suggesting that you be real and don’t always strive to only show the ‘perfect’ and polished sides of your self.
Time to mess up
Notice the word message contains the word ‘mess’. Sometimes if you let your mess come through in your message, you become an example for people. An inspiration and most of all you become real.
No one wants to follow someone they can’t relate to or connect with. People connect with you when they know you can really relate to their pain and their experience. Not because you studied it in school, or attended the workshop, but because you’ve been there. You know what it feels like to feel scared, or desperate, or hopeless or even just plain challenged in life!
If you’re working as a in the healing or coaching profession, knowing your story helps your clients to understand you’ve been there. You’ve overcome odds to do what you do today. By revealing your mess and seeing and understanding the lessons in those messy situations, you become a fully realized human being. Someone solid, and someone worth working with.
Who do you admire?
Think of the people you admire who’ve faced adversity, come out the other side and are role models. People who pick themselves up and still carry one. They get the job done, whatever the job is.
Their stories are more powerful because of what they’ve overcome in life. Their achievements and where they are today. We champion people whose stories we know. We’re skeptical of those who seem to just get there with no struggle.
Be real, be authentic, don’t be afraid to use your experience as an example for others. You just may be surprised how that willingness to be open shows up in your bank account!