The P.A.

A weekly address from Patrick Adams,
President of St. Louis Community Credit Union

Introspection Can Make Your Relationships A Little Better

On February 11th, 2013, posted in: Uncategorized by

I’m not sure what Mr.Thesaurus and his gang of synonymous-minded folks call it, but the word “introspection” should have a reference to “priceless gift.”  Introspection is the “ability to look within” and, quite frankly, is way up there on my list of things for which I am, personally, most thankful.

Since the natural reaction of most people is to toss blame into someone else’s corner, the ability to first look within is a fabulous gift and defies standard operating procedure for the world’s finger pointers.  Every time – I mean EVERY time – there is a problem of some sort between me and another person, I immediately “look within” and determine what could have or should have been done differently to make the situation right.  Burdensome? Yes, but highly fruitful.

Here’s the deal on this issue.  Since we interact with people every day of our life, we should want to be really, really good at it.  Personal, professional, leader, follower, etc., etc., whatever our respective role, we should always be in the position of having to navigate the difficult terrain of God’s highly complex, rather emotional, sometimes less-than-rational creature: the “other” human being.  Since the other person in our interaction is never wrong and will usually remain obstinate in their position of being right, it would serve us all well to “go with what we know,” i.e. SELF.  Step back, take a deep breath, and then ask the tough question: “How could I have improved on what just happened here?”

Don’t be confused.  I’m not asking anyone to compromise their beliefs, nor am I suggesting that anyone give up their opinion on a matter.  What I’m suggesting is that we all be introspective and begin to understand what could and should be done differently in order to facilitate a greater understanding of how to make our interactions more productive, more convincing and more palatable for all parties.

Here are some good ideas:  Check yourself.  Listen to your tone of voice.  Make sure your body language is open.  Make eye contact.  Be patient.  Smile.  Listen intently.  Make sure your emotion is friendly and caring.  Be interested.  Don’t multi-task during meaningful conversation.  Give your undivided attention.  I break my own rules all the time.  But I try diligently to practice what I preach.

Those are just a few of the things I focus on in any interaction.  I discovered these traits make every relationship a little bit better.  You know how

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