You know the old saying, “Does your talk match your walk?” That principle of our actions and words matching up has been a guiding one throughout my career. And in studying Applied Emotional Intelligence with Genos® International, I’ve learned about how that principle fits into emotionally intelligent behavior. Turns out there’s more that needs to be aligned than just your words and actions. So today I invite you to reflect and ask yourself, are you aligned?
“Authenticity is the alignment of head, mouth, heart, and feet – thinking, saying, feeling, and doing the same thing – consistently.” –Lance Secretan
Simple maybe, but not easy
Challenges with aligning those four components might vary from person to person. Someone who prefers a more harmonious work environment might hold back more often from sharing how they feel with others, especially if those feelings are negative. Someone who is an internal processor might be thinking the right things and even doing the right things, but may not communicate them effectively. Someone (me) who is outspoken might over communicate, working out the best way to say something as they are saying it. That might make the part about being sensitive to others (the heart) more of a challenge.
I squeeze the toothpaste out of the tube too quickly, as one of my clients says, and then I can’t put it back in. Growth around authenticity for me means first considering how the other person might hear what I want to say. It means paying more attention to what they are showing me as they interact with me. What cues can I read to help me think, say, feel and do what I need to communicate in the way they can best hear me?
Where do your challenges lie?
How aligned are your head, mouth, heart, and feet?
What’s one area that could use some work?
Pick a specific situation where you know you’re not in alignment. Perhaps a hard conversation that needs to happen or difficult feedback that needs to be given.
Be honest about where your challenge lies. Reflect on how the other person might best be able to hear what you have to say. Then gather your courage and go forward.
I can’t wait to hear how it goes for you!