FOCUS ON PERSONALITY – INSIGHTS FOR LEADERS AND MANAGERS
Whether you lead a multinational, a public sector organisation, a small business or a public benefit organisation, it is critical for you keep check your personality and the concept of MEANING and how these affects your human relations, including how you relate to yourself.
Lets start by examining these two following part sentences:
“In other words are you saying that…” or “In other words she is trying to tell me that…”
Whereas feedback is important, and paraphrasing too – particularly in a dialogue – looking at the two above part-sentences, the communicator did not use other words.
“In other words” is exactly that – OTHER WORDS, and not MY WORDS (if i am in the communicator in this instance).
However, this continues to present problems in human relations whether in the workplace, business or home setting. I have seen many relationships breaking down simply because of interpretations and MEANING attached to “OTHER WORDS”.
It is in that view that i will be posting three articles on this very subject – particularly related to PERSONALITY. This is the first such article – i must apologize because it is too long!
Interpretations of events, whether their occurrence is resulting from internal dialogue or external in nature – are critical in formulating accurate perceptions of what is happening. Interestingly one’s interpretations have a lot to do with their personality. Human being have the three following personalities:
(1) Original Personality
(2) Available Personality
(3) Formed Personality
The first one is to deal with how we were as we were born – the personality we were born with. This is an observable personality and it is extremely difficult to confirm because even those who observed it, lets say parents, cannot clearly state what happened with what they saw – some of us were born with lets say a jolly personality or sad personality – still very difficult to observe.
What we know is what we are told by those who observed us. It is very difficult then to accurately adopt the original personality as our own personality – chances being that there is a possibility of overlap to formed personality or even artificial personality.
If we feel we know what sort of person we were at birth – we might end up feeling that we know what we were supposed to become in our adult lives – and that is the problem. Our original personality cannot be used to define for instance that we were supposed to be sad in our adult lives because this is what we projected when we were babies and even toddlers.
Original Personality should not be confused with the personality that one develops even as a growing child due to things that happen to that child in those years of growing.
How does this relate to MEANING?
The fact that most people are born with quite different original personalities alerts us to our differences as human beings and that we may interpret matters differently and as such formulate different constructions of what MEANING is to us.
We need to understand the importance of MEANING in DECISION making and how original personality affects it. Generally MEANING is purely a psychological experience and as such is biased to being very subjective than objective and connects directly to our Original Personality.
Citing the earlier example of a child born and growing up sadder than the one growing up jolly – it becomes normal for them to grow up into their adult lives like that – the one remains always sad – sadness becomes part of them while the other one thrives when they are jolly – the sadder one thrives while they are sad. This is simply living life in accordance with one’s birth instructions. Even in this situation you cannot know for sure what the components of our original personalities were – we simply cannot have clue to it and observer testimony remains purely subjective.
In many times people live their lives under a mask and that mask helps them to cope – survive any given circumstance. Sadly is that most decisions are made under the influence of that mask. For instance, one might project cheerfulness in masking their sadness. In most of my work i have seen this – where people – and usually most people, live under a mask and sadly make decisions under that mask. Fact is – since we cannot clearly know exactly what our original personality is – we live life not even understanding ourselves – yet it is important to understand ourselves.
Fact is we just live life and carry on as we have seen ourselves – coupled with experiences that we have had in our growing life and ultimately at different stages in our adult life and we use these for making decisions. In other words – if you have been let down in many situations by people you trusted – you will naturally make decisions based on your experiences and how you view yourself.
So – the Original Personality is and cannot be your life’s blue-print. How you have known yourself – what you have been told about yourself cannot really define the kind of person you want to be. Remember in the introduction i cited three types of personalities – so indeed you can still achieve the kind of person you want to be.
In my next blog i will write about Available Personality and how can it help us in terms of achieving:
– Self perception
– Personal growth
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