I think it’s important to ask yourself questions about yourself constantly. There’s any number that will be (or should be ) running through your mind constantly. Was I really listening? Did I hear what was said? Who was that decision made for? Is this the right decision for all concerned? Is that too expensive? Why does ………….continually wind me up?
Some of us are really good at asking ourselves questions constantly and making sure we respond to all situations and not just react.
However, it’s not easy. You have to be on your guard, especially if you think you’re quite good at it. Avoid the moral high ground most of us don’t deserve.
I was on the phone the other day and the conversation went something like this.
Me: Hello can I speak to Fred please?
Voice: Fred is not available at the moment, who is speaking?
Voice: And where are you from Simon?
Me: Great Mongeham.
Voice: And why are you calling?
Me: I need to talk to Fred.
Voice: Why do you need to talk to Fred?
Me: Fred asked me to call him on this number.
Voice: What number have you dialled?
Me: The number on his E mail, 0123456.
Voice: that’s the general business number.
Me: And who are you?
The conversation is starting to get a bit of an edge now
Voice: I’m Nic, I own the business.
Me: I need to talk to Fred, he is midway through a project for me.
The call started going round in circles, Nic wasn’t doing very well. I suggested that maybe if he was the business owner he should put himself on a course to learn how to make his customers feel valued. I also mentioned that as a client who was midway through a project that he would be issuing an invoice to soon, he really ought to have a better attitude. That content circulated a couple of times too.
Eventually I told him he was boring, the conversation was boring and I wasn’t happy. I hung up on him.
Ten minutes later Fred called and we had a very amicable and productive conversation. So unlike the call I’d just had with Nic.
It was somewhat later reflecting on the conversation that I realised I was not as happy with myself. Here am I an advocate of how we should look after ourselves and thus how we treat others. How we look for and find peace on the inside. How we can ease our anxieties and reduce stress.
And I had unintentionally been unhelpful during this conversation.
And I’d actually hung up on him.
What questions should I have asked myself?
Is he having a bad day?
How should I answer these questions, especially when I’m acutely aware of what he’s actually asking?
What do I actually want from this conversation?
Does he actually deserve me right now?
Are a few, that I should’ve been asking continually. The answers would have totally changed the outcome.
Would I want to be on the other end of this conversation?
If we ask ourselves good questions, we can be authentic, authentic to ourselves and others. That’s important because if we are authentic to ourselves and spend a little time trying to look at situations from the point of view of others, we will begin to have a little peace on the inside.
I write and speak a lot about finding a little peace and I had just taken it from someone else.
I regretted my part in the conversation. Nic might have already been having a bad day and I might have just made it a whole lot worse.
At least realisation means I can remember this experience and hopefully make better choices next time.
I do want to be the person that I would like to listen to.