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DISCovering Greater Awareness

It’s really amazing to be a grandfather. It’s kind of like getting a second chance at parenting without all of the responsibilities that come with being a parent. I like every age as it comes.

Every age is the best ever - for them, and for me! I do not spend my energy wishing for the past. When the child is a baby, I enjoy holding a baby. When they are one to two, I enjoy watching them learn to walk. And now, at age 4 ½, I enjoy them running into me full steam, and pretending that they knock me to the ground. They love tackling, or at least thinking that they are tackling Groot, that’s my nickname as their grandpa.

This reflection brings to mind a time when one of our girls was an infant, (I think it was Kylie), and she was laying on her back on a blanket, moving her arms around in the air only to discover her “hand.” I can still picture the shocked look on her face with what would seem to be thoughts like , “OMG, what is that?! Where did that come from? Hey, it’s attached.” She rolled her hand around looking at the front and then the back - she was utterly amazed, until something else took her attention. It doesn’t matter to me which girl it was. The point is - this happens to us even as adults. When we discover or achieve something that we didn’t know or initially feel comfortable doing - we are amazed. We dwell and think on it personally - trying to make sense of it - how did I do that? Was it a fluke? Is this something I enjoyed? Do I want more of it?

Awareness of our strengths is of great importance and value.

When we focus on our strengths we can maximize our potential and our purpose.

I hear people’s stories where they seem to pay more attention to that imaginary voice in their head telling them that they are “less than.” Less than others. Less than enough. Less than valuable. This is so untrue. It pains me to hear these “less than” notions. When this perception becomes our reality - it’s hard to convince them otherwise…’s why an abused person stays in an abusive relationship. Their perception is that it is their fault. They believe that there is nothing better for them. If we choose to accept this as reality, then also make it reality. If we choose to live above and beyond, then it isn’t reality.

I recently heard a speaker share a fear of “not being perfect.”

In fact, Tom Hanks and Michelle Obama are well known people who have admitted to feeling this way. I myself grew up with a strong desire for perfection. I expect that many surgeons struggle with this in their careers. This fear of “not being perfect” is very similar to the fear of “not being enough.” I know I was a confident person in high school, but this did not translate into my college education. I did not do as well in my chosen major as I expected. This was quite difficult for me. It became a part of my story as a “recovering perfectionist. Additionally, I believe that I, as well as others, can be smarter than grades necessarily demonstrate. I excelled in other areas. And it’s about how we associate with others. As an introvert, I was confident in myself, but not always confident in working with others. This led to my “less than” thoughts and doubts in myself because I realized I would not be as successful as I desired if I struggled to work with others. And when I worked in a corporate environment where most of the people I worked with were primarily confident in themselves, the greatest successes were slow to happen because selfishness prevailed over teamwork. It was more like the first Olympic basketball team of all-stars which functioned as a bunch of individuals than it did as a true team. It is for this reason that I get so excited with the true underdog sports stories that exemplified success only when the self was sacrificed for the greater good of the team. (Examples: Miracle on Ice, Mighty Macs, Underdog)

Would it be valuable to you?

What if you could have an experience where you received unbiased information to give you greater awareness of self and your strongest leadership strengths? Would that be valuable to you? I know that it has been valuable to me. In fact, thinking about it, has caused me once again to open it up and take a look at it.

For example - Brian, as a Designer style, is an extremely task-oriented person who is sensitive to problems. Designers may appear to care more about task planning and completion than the feelings of people around them. Brian is very determined and has an approach to thinking that allows for effective problem solving. Because of a Designer’s driven nature and desire for tangible results, they may come across as unfeeling or even cool and distant at times. They make decisions based upon facts, not on emotions. They tend to be quiet and do not trust easily.

Some of this makes me sound pretty good - because it clarifies a strength of mine - problem solving. Yet, I must realize that I come across cool and distant because of my focus on tasks. It has helped me to modify my approach and be more patient. I can supply this type of information to you as well. Not more of mine, lol, but share your greatest strengths with you, of course; and opportunities to uncover your blindspots - these are areas where you can choose to improve. This is the Maxwell DISC personality indicator. I hope you can see why it is one of my favorite tools to share with people. The Maxwell Leadership Company partnered with one of the premier DISC personality companies to develop Maxwell DISC. The benefits of this combination are to bring awareness to one’s own personality style of communication, initiate awareness that the best communication we can use is to talk in “other people’s communication style.” It’s like going to a foreign country - we can act like my 4 ½ year old and stomp our foot, and demand that they speak English since it’s the “universal language.” However, this won’t go far at that moment. Our only real option is to do our best to communicate in such a way “their language/pictures/pointing” is something that THEY can understand.

If you want to have a discussion about this assessment, let’s have a one-to-one. In the meantime, I leave you with a quote from Jim Rohn, the legendary personal development philosopher. “One person caring about another represents life’s greatest value.”

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