Wednesday, 16 June 2010

Do you know or do you need to be told

I saw the next door cat as I came home last night. Well I heard her first - as they've just added a collar with bell to try to stop her catching birds. Poor thing looked very dejected as she walked along the path. From the point of view of the cat I would imagine she's happy if she catches the bird and yet her owners are happy when she doesn't. In this instance it's really easy to understand what a good day looks like for both parties and understand how they are different. The cat's also unlikely to be impacted by the owners beliefs and visa versa.

In our lives I'm not sure it's always that easy. I had a GREAT day yesterday and yet is that because I know I did or because this morning I've had tweets and emails thanking me for the inspiration in my blog, newsletter, coaching and a workshop? and if I hadn't got that response or even worse if I'd got less than enthusiastic responses would it have meant it wasn't a great day or I hadn't done a good job?

I know our goals have an impact on the judgements we make but there's also something else that impacts us and that's whether we're internally or externally referenced. That is do you know you've done a good job or do you need someone else to tell you?

Both have their down sides - someone who is internally referenced and knows they've done a good job can find it hard to see other people's points of view and not understand nor accept feedback on how their performance could have been improved. Those who are externally referenced may sit there waiting for feedback and if it's less than positive may take it very much to heart.

The key is understanding your preference and the up and down side of this. Then working on either being more open to others opinions or not needing them at all. When working with others it's about understanding their preference too and perhaps ensuring those externally referenced get the praise and you find a way of providing feedback to those who are internally referenced in a way that they are able to hear.

I know for me it's about listening more to my intuition in the moment about whether I'm doing a good job and turning down the negative internal chatter that appears after I've finished anything that seems to undermine my achievements.

What about you? Do you need to listen more to others feedback or turn down your sensitivity to their comments?

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