How we react, respond and deal with every day situations is highly influenced by our perspective. It can be so subtle, we don’t realize that it influences how we see things.
Here’s a good analogy- Ever looked through a cardboard tube and noticed how narrow your view becomes? Like the narrow view through the tube, you’re perspective of your problem may be too narrow or focused on only a small part of the overall situation.
Perspective can help us overcome our problems too.
Have an issue with another person? Take on their perspective of the problem.
Maybe it’s a business problem? Look at it from the point of view of your competitor/s.
Ask someone to tell you their perspective if these 2 strategies aren’t possible. Be prepared for an answer you may not like or want to hear, however. Don’t take this sort of feedback personally! This feedback is GOLD and may save you a relationship or further business / work problems. Make sure you:
- TRULY listen to what they have to say.
- Ask clarifying questions if you have difficulty understanding what they mean.
- Take your emotional response and perspective out of the conversation.
- Genuinely thank them.
- Acknowledge how much you appreciate their honesty.
How do I know this works?
I ran a workshop recently and one of the topics I covered in my presentation was the value of honesty and trust when seeking feedback – someone else’s perspective. One participant left about 1/3 of the way through. As a degree of honesty and trust had already been established within the group, I was able to seek her feedback and perspective without her feeling under pressure or feeling uncomfortable. Result? I’m reconnecting with this person next week and spending time reviewing and trying to match what she truly wants with what I have to offer.
So, what’s my underlying message?