I’ve had two coaching sessions now and am thoroughly enjoying them. I won’t lie, I always quite enjoy talking about myself, but coaching with Barbara Watkinson (http://www.mc-cubed.co.uk/team.html) is different. She challenges me not to talk about myself, but to think about myself.
Barbara has started me on a journey, that I could well be on for the rest of my life. By understanding my personality type, I can understand my natural preferences. These are the behaviours I am comfortable demonstrating, my friends like me for them and my employers value these skills in me. I direct my energy towards these behaviours because I prefer them, they excite me and make me feel competent. And because I direct my energy here, I get better at them.
But what about the areas where I am not so comfortable? Let’s get real here, I am never going to change my inherent personality type. But by recognising the behaviours I favour less, I can recognise where I should be directing my energy. In the times when, because of my personality type, I may be insensitive, short-sighted or dogmatic I need to recognise the behaviours I am not demonstrating – sensitivity, imagination, insight and so on. For me, this means spending some time developing my “N” preferences (those of you who have done Myers Briggs will be familiar with this). It will take me years to develop my weaker areas, and it will be a constant battle to remind myself to think about these ahead of my natural preferences.
I won’t become a different person, but perhaps by understanding my preferences, working on my non-preferences and understanding other people’s preferences I can grow into a better person.