Fear is quieting. When we disagree with insulting or offensive language, it is the short-term pain, the risk of our own relationship, that blinds us to a better outcome for all. Inaction is accepting that it will continue. Until someone offers a counter argument, others gain superiority in their opinions and belief they’re in the right. How then, do we Show Up and ensure we’re speaking for not just ourselves and our values but others around us?
Lead with emotional composure. Explain how that certain language affects how you feel while limiting the outward expression of it. You deserve to be upset, no one deserves to be shouted at.
Be global in your own language by moving beyond the person directly. “If no one used that language, how would that shift our perception of others?”
Fear is quieting. Courage, is speaking in the presence of fear.
I received this advice at a time when I was considering moving into a role different than my previous. They stated “If you’re comfortable, something is wrong.” It seemed odd at first but after some time absorbing those words, it became less foreboding. At the core, it’s how you do what you do.
Are you present in it or simply going through the motions? Are you challenged to adapt and learn or have you mastered everything to the point every task is almost unconscious? In relation to my position at the time, it was the latter – I had an answer for everything and it was time to move on.
My wife and I just bought our first house last week and while we’re forced to answer the tough questions, like “Where do the spatulas go for the next seven to ten years?” I’m relishing the different scenery. Much like a new position the space is brighter, larger and presents new challenges such as home improvement. This is the first house we’re owning over renting and it’s completely foreign to us. I had to run to Lowe’s and buy a pair of pliers! Not prepared. Another challenge, the epitome of going through the motions, finding the bathroom at night without bumping into anything.
Show Up This Week
A new house or new position are massive changes but it doesn’t have to be radical shifts to be uncomfortable. Smaller moments can keep you present. Go the opposite direction on your walk – you’ll see the same houses from different angles. Actually try that “new” restaurant you’ve driven by fifty times. Change your desk around, change your furniture. Read a book outside your typical genre. Don’t necessarily change your routine or what you do instead, do it differently, or how you do it.