You’ve likely heard the saying “perception is reality.” For those of us doing the perceiving it is OUR reality. It might not be THE reality, but it is our version of reality (I’m not trying to get all metaphysical on you here).
Normally, the two versions are close enough not to cause us problems. However, there are times when the subject is a big deal or important and the disconnect between my version of what is true and the real version of what is true can cause some serious problems. This is when a coach can help.
We’ve all experienced the impact of this disconnect. I hear a co-worker say something in a way that, to me, sends the message that her work is more important than mine. Based on this, I say something to correct her. Which over time escalates into a broken relationship. Or my boss sits back in his chair, crosses his arms, and looks at me over his glasses when I’m providing an update. I see this and I feel that he is impatient with what I’m saying and I shut down. My boss in turn sees me lack of words as a lack of preparation.
In both of these rather simple examples, and there is an endless number of them, how I perceived the words and actions of others affected how I acted which in turn affected how the other person acted. (By the way, this happens in reverse sometime too…where I might get “credit” for something based on someones perception of what I said or did.) So what’s to be done?