I can tell when I’ve outgrown a conversational dynamic when I start to distract myself. If I’m on the phone at my computer when it happens, I’ll unconsciously start browsing the net or cleaning out my inbox. When I notice that, I refocus on the conversation. I take a step back and ask myself—why is what this person saying putting me to sleep?
It happened this week when a relative started parenting me in old ways we’ve both outgrown. When he started nudging me to be innovative and creative, the switch flipped, and I found myself searching shawls from India on eBay. Here’s what I ask myself.
- Okay, me, there’s the clue. What’s going on right here and now, self, that is old and tired? And how can we elevate this conversation to one that interests us again?
This man has always taught me to strive to new, higher levels in my work. I’ve got that, and I do, and I don’t need him to do it any more. I also don’t need him to evaluate whether I’m doing it right or not.
But what I do need, is to let him know that I have internalized that quality of his. I live it. So while I’ve outgrown the dynamic that my eBay search alerted me to, I haven’t outgrown the desire to share how grateful I am for the lessons I embody thanks to him.
And to think, all this came from an eBay search for shawls from India. It’s a magical world when your eyes are open.
What clues are right in front of your eyes that you’re overlooking?