How we relate to ourselves directly affects how we interact with others and our environment.
Today, I had the pleasure of receiving some quick feedback from a friend of mine on the manuscript for A Valued Life, Managing the Business of You. I haven’t had the chance to go through Steve’s notes, but after a lunch get together, he had 30 seconds to summarize what he thought. He indicated that the focus of the manuscript was on relating to one’s self instead of relating to others. I found this perspective something I hadn’t thought of before. At first I was a little confronted. With further reflection, I found the truth in his statement. Our business is very much about relating to ourselves.
When individuals do not have a strong relation to themselves they move with the tides of their social environment. I see this in my kids and the kids they integrate with. When they are in a group, they become something other than when they are alone. I suppose we all do this to varying degrees. However, to be an individual is to know and understand what one’s self is all about. Individuation is about strengthening the relationship between our past, present and future selves. Being and individual is to value ourselves for who we are and the purpose we find in life. Once we relate to ourselves, our interactions with the rest of the world improves.
Even though it was only a 30 second interchange about the manuscript, his thoughtful criticism shared a perspective I had not considered and strengthened my ideas. I look forward to diving into the details that Steve was so gracious to include in his reading of the manuscript.
As Betty Dodson indicated in one of her interviews, “Good Criticism is invaluable.” I couldn’t agree more.