A few cases in point:
- We say, ‘To make a long story short…’ and then we make a short story long.
- We feel virtuous about stocking up on healthy fruit and vegetables. But, do we eat them? No, we just let them waste away.
- We buy new running shoes and set up the treadmill, and then let them collect dust in the corner.
- We repeatedly show up late to appointments because there is always ‘something unexpected’ that gets in our way.
I recently led a training session for a group of leaders. They started the day by sharing how much they had been learning about the importance of being present to their staff – listening and attending with care. Many of them then proceeded to spend a big chunk of our time together flipping through messages and texting on their smart phones.
At the root of the issue is the quality of our self awareness – the ability to see ourselves as we really are. It’s an essential skill, but one that can be tough to cultivate.
Because we’re privy to our intentions – spoken and unspoken – we cut ourselves a LOT of slack. We credit ourselves with points for our good intentions and don’t deduct points for our less than ideal behaviors.
What really matters most, though, is our actions. And it is those actions that build or destroy our health or our relationships and establish our character – both on the inside and through the eyes of others.
Action: How do you get better at self awareness and alignment? (more…)