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God got it right, but we didn’t

Posted: May 10th, 2012 | Author: Raj | Filed under: Coaching | Tags: , , , | No Comments »

Having constantly moved in and out of meeting rooms over these past few weeks, I took a conscious decision to shut myself off from the incessant chatter within my head. Most of us achieve this while asleep, but on a flight back home earlier this week, I managed to keep the idiot within my head quite for a few brief seconds. I did that by shouting “Are you listening to me? Or do you want me to constantly listen to you?”

There was momentary silence. Must say it was pure bliss. Not having someone up there constantly telling you things, asking you questions, making mundane observations about the chap in the next seat, getting you to check out the cabin crew… the things that this voice in the head gets you to do!

During that brief interlude between my conversations with myself, I harked back to the day’s discussions ever so briefly. In fir first blinding flash, it came to me… something that made me cringe. Most of what I could recall from my discussions with a prospective customer related to the points I made or the ones made by my colleague in that meeting. The few points made by others in the room related to matters that were personally profitable – meaning issues where my interlocutor raised issues to which I had answers.

What was going wrong? I had spent more than 200 minutes in a room with five others and all I could recall was aspects that either presented me and my colleague in a favorable light or provided me with some reason to justify the stand I took. Where was all the NLP that I was supposed to practice constantly?

The second blinding flash came and I realized that my listening skills were at best below average. The old theory of God wanting us to listen more and therefore giving us two ears and just one mouth came flooding back. Why on earth couldn’t I recall most of the issues that one of the participants had raised? Was it because I saw no reason to listen to him? If so, what made me ignore him so very efficiently?

A third blinding flash and realization dawned that this person, though important in the hierarchy, did not have decision making powers that two of the others had in the room. Somewhere my mind had told me “no need to take this chap seriously. After all, his two bosses are on my side. And so it was that I walked through more than three hours without actually listening to the one participant in the room with whom I’d be liaising constantly if the project comes through.

By this time, the man in my head was shouting out loud. Giving me a bevy of excuses on why I did the right thing or why I should get my ass whipped. There were no more blinding flashes and I settled down to do what I do the best on flights. Snore in peace!

Upon opening my bulk mails earlier today, I came across an interesting article titled “The Number One Skill”… Having read it a few times, I got another blinding flash… that I must practice hard to get more of these flashes if I hope to really make an impact on others around me. Else, I’d continue to remain a muddled mind running all over the place.

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