Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Part 1: The way I see it

Recently I finished a 7 Habits for Effective People training for the school where I teach. In order to process the information I decided to write about it in The Race. I seldom take time to reflect on why I do the things I do. This training is forcing me to, gladly, do so again.
As an introduction, the training says, "Our personality is what people see first. Although our image, techniques and skills can influence our success, the real source of lasting effectiveness lies in strong character - which are the roots of our personality."
This brings up in my mind Friedman's quote in his book "Failure of Nerve" when he says,
There are two distinct ways of leading. One depends on the accumulation of information, data and techniques when synthesized will give direction for a leader. The other, relies on the “their presence, the nature of their being, not in the storehouse of data or armamentarium of technique. The key to leadership, therefore, is not how a leader manages others but how a leader manages him- or herself.” Freidman calls this “leadership through self differentiation.”

SO, our energy in running the race should go to our own character development. It is for the most part unseen, but ultimately significant if we are to see fruit in our lives (which is what people see the most.) Character, like a foundation to a house, is necessary to protect the house from the storms, diasaters, and whatever people and nature has to throw at it. Our life, our personality will be only as good as the character it is built on to weather the storms and challenges of life.

The training introduces people to paradigms. A paradigm is defined as "the way we see, understand and interpret the world; our mental map." We are challenged to articulate our view of the reality; how we see the world and where I fit. Everyone has a view of the world, whether they know it or not. We DO things based on how we SEE reality. For example: if we understand (see) the importance of going the speed limit driving down the highway, then we will drive (behavior) at or under the speed limit. As a consequence (result), we will be a safer driver and avoid getting a speeding ticket.

This is what is called the SEE-DO-GET model. "The results we get in life depend on what we do. What we do in life depends on how we see the world around us."

The question before us is, "what have we been conditioned to see?" Our view of the world; life and how it ought to be lived has been conditioned by our upbringing, environment, and experiences. Who are we listening to?
We need to examine our paradigms.

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