Hello spiritual friends!
Recently, a close friend (Mark) who manages a small business with a few employees was concerned about the personal appearance of one of his employees. Sam is a very loyal and dedicated employee, but Mark felt Sam's dress and grooming was not up to par for someone who worked with the public. And it had slipped a little more as of late.
Mark wanted to communicate his concern about Sam's appearance in positive and gentle way. Sam is a critical employee to the business, and he didn't want Mark to feel like he was being judged or criticized. He simply wanted to inspire him to make a change in his appearance when working with the public.
Mark approached the conversation with a heart-centered approach. And he gave Sam an incentive to make the change. He recalled the day about a year prior to this time when Sam showed up to work with his beard freshly trimmed, a neat haircut, and pressed slacks. At that time, everyone marveled about how great he looked. Secretly, they wondered if he was dating someone!
Mark began the discussion by simply reminding Sam of this earlier time when he came to work looking so handsome with that new cleaned-up look. He commented on the importance of his role in representing the business working with customers. Mark spoke about how much he appreciated the value Sam brings to the company. And it wasn't just a vague, empty compliment. In his appreciation, Mark praised Sam in his dedication to both customer satisfaction and the company and related a few specific examples of his recent good work and accomplishments.
Funny thing is about a week later, Sam got a haircut and trimmed his beard!
What caused Sam to change? Mark gave Sam "something to live into".
Mark reminded Sam of an aspect of his own identity that resonated within. I daresay, Sam liked looking handsome! And, when his boss talked about the ways he was so appreciated in his work, he may have also felt inspired to please him and experience more of it.
Years ago, I worked with a psychologist who gave a definition of how we feel loved in relationship. I don't recall the exact words, but it was something like we love those who see us for "who we want to be". While I think being loved for who we are right now is terrifically important, this idea illustrates how important it is for us to also be recognized for where we are going.
Our identity is such an important part of our internal being. It impacts our attitude and sense of well-being, how we relate with others, what kinds of partners, friends, goals we choose, our self-esteem and so much more. I think our identity encompasses both who we are today and where we want to go in life.
Our interpersonal relationships provide a wonderful opportunity for us to help give others "something to live into". We can remind them of their inner beauty, skills and talents and validate their very best sense of self. This offers them the spiritual freedom and safety to grow, expand and see something new and exciting for themselves.
If you liked this topic (and live in the Denver area), I wanted to let you know I'll be giving a presentation on relationships at the Denver Body, Mind and Spirit Expo this weekend.
Deepening Your Relationships
- Learn three easy ways to achieve more peace, harmony and contentment in your relationships.
- Saturday, March 18th, 2:00 pm, Room #2
- 45 minutes long
See below for more information about the fair and my workshop.
Blessings to you on your spiritual journey!