In working with clients and even in day to day life I have noticed a theme emerge that I want to bring forth. It’s urgent in my mind and it’s a lesson that I’ve learned and continue to learn and that has made a profound impact on my own life. Learning this helps to release stress and allows you to be yourself. Your best self.
What I’m referring to is common sense and also a presupposition of neurolinguistic programming (NLP) and it states simply: respect other people’s model of the world.
What does this mean? There is a saying in Hawaii that says “think not that all the wisdom is in your school.” This saying helped me understand this concept. You may be thinking, “I get it! Obviously I don’t know everything!” And its true, not one person can know everything. But that’s not what this idea is entirely about.
Think for a moment of all the times when you argue with someone and about the basis of that argument. You are usually trying to convince the other person of your opinion or your way of doing something. Your way; your model of the world. You have learned that in your reality and your life something has worked for you and so you feel the need
to share that with others. Convince them and teach them. You get frustrated when they don’t listen to you or don’t follow your advice even though they may ask for it. Similarly others get frustrated with us because we don’t do things their way. Perhaps you jump to conclusions about people, their stuff, their clothes, how they talk all because they are different and pursuing different ways of life. I know I’ve been guilty of this.
This is not to say that you should never have another conversation again or that you shouldn’t express your opinion. You are entitled to that. What this is saying is that you can’t change others or ever really know their model of their world. Your journey is different from theirs. You can offer help if it’s wanted. By all means debate and converse and enjoy others. But be slow to criticize, to jump to conclusions, or to get upset if someone doesn’t do what you perceive to be right for them. Detach from other peoples’ outcomes. Its’ their journey and everyone is doing the best they can with the resources they have. If they want to change something they will find the tools and one of those tools may or may not include you.
People will be more comfortable around you when you don’t attach yourself to their outcome. They will feel free around you and peaceful. They will know and feel that they are respected and not judged. They will be able to be themselves and know that you will not try to change them or criticize them.
I want to add that children need guidance and support. It’s important to remember where guidance ends and control begins. This was and continues to be a big learning curve for me. I am better than I used to be. The older children get the more they make their own minds up. We can share how we’ve done things and then let them decide for themselves how to proceed within a safe range of choices. Our role is to make sure they are safe and loved, and that their choices fall within a zone that is enriching and guiding for them. Children need structure and we have to remember to respect that they are people with their own model of the world.
What do you think?