When it comes to making a shared decision, whether it be at home or in the office, do you sometimes think that only you can make the best decisions because you are the expert? Are you the parent or manager who knows best? What if I told you that you might not; would you think I was off my rocker?
This idea often shocks my clients. For whatever reason, you believe you are the only one capable of deciding because you are the specialist. Now to be clear here, when it relates to your personal feelings I’m not disputing or going to tell you otherwise. Without a doubt you are the expert for any decision that involves you alone. I teach my clients that absolutely no one should weigh in on why you should or should not feel a certain way. In order to stand in your true power, you need to listen to your own feelings. It is the only way to find your joy and happiness in life.
Yet, one place often misunderstood is when situations and outcomes involve other people. Being the authority, you won’t ask for help, assistance, or outside information. In fact, you can also be very close-minded if someone tries to share information that may be useful. The belief is that you know best or already know everything you need to know in order to make the decision, so why bother listening to anyone else. However, have you ever had the experience where someone shares something with you and you say “I wish I knew that before”? That is where the value of listening to someone else comes into play even when you don’t think you have to. It could make your life and job easier, you may avoid costly mistakes, and you’ll probably save time. There are many benefits.
An open-mind allows for possibilities and opportunities to come to us translating into more joy, happiness and satisfaction in our lives. Many of my clients see that being open and receptive to hearing what someone else has to say makes their lives so much easier and more satisfying. Here are three tips to get you started:
- Listen with an open-mind: Are you shooting down an idea without really hearing what the person has to say? If you are, chances are you are being perceived as pigheaded and inflexible. Stop yourself and listen to the other person closely. If necessary, ask questions to gain clarity. You might learn something!
- See it through a different pair of eyes: If you are thinking “Oh, I already know that”, you’re falling back into old habits. How can you see the situation in a new light that’s different from your point of view? Look at it through the presenter’s eyes; what might they see that you are not. It certainly could make a big difference in the final outcome.
- Try it on for size: Even if you’re still hesitant, be willing to “try on” the new idea to see how it fits. Run through a few scenarios in your head (or on paper if time permits). How might this different idea change the outcome? Remember, you always have to break in a pair of new shoes before they feel good!
In the end, you give yourself and others the opportunity to expand your vision. When you have opened your mind to new possibilities and opportunities, you see things differently and can never make a wrong decision. Just think of the success and happiness you will experience by being open to being open-minded.