For February, I thought I’d honour Groundhog Day. It seems to be a constant theme for so many of us! I am sure you have seen it in others, as I have, yet when we look in the mirror, do we not see the same pattern? I know I get caught on this treadmill.
But I need to tell you I have found the perfect excuse, not recommended practice but definitely a good one.
I went to meet with a nutritionist-type person. He is a scientist, not solely nutritional approach and he did an assortment of tests., I wanted to do something other than the ‘meds’ approach. Though the meds approach would have been easier as it gives a quick fix, I find one quick fix leads to another rather than treating the root concerns.
After some testing, he told me, ‘The testing shows you have a tired brain!’
What does this mean in translation?
It becomes the perfect, rational response when I think about what I should do and what needs to be done, but instead, I do nothing or fritter time away. The result is that I need to listen or hear what is available or could be helpful.
In a tragically ironic way, let me share using a crisis response that I was involved with.
I was watching a TV show called Mayday. To be clear, this is not a regular activity, but I was waiting for the football game to start! I was watching them tell a story about a plane crash. As I listened, I thought this sounded very familiar, so I continued to listen. I discovered it was a call I was involved with– at the office, not on scene. Some pieces started to emerge through the investigation.
When we have a tired brain, we must know who and what we’re listening to. It is that kind of guidance or information that we intake. As my grandma used to say, “garbage in, garbage out!”
At the office, I heard various people tell me that this would cost them their job, that they would be blamed for mechanical failure, and the assortment of other persons who all expected to be the scapegoats. Therefore, my perception was influenced by who and what I was listening to.
Without quoting the TSB report, but from the Mayday show, the two things that stood out on that fateful day were the convergence of two essential things in any leadership role.
The first was the leader who had years, hours, of experience doing the work and therefore was not able to hear the questions that the co-pilot was asking. Whether it was the insecurity of the new co-pilot who did not have the hours, or the overinflated security of the leader who wasn’t hearing and listening, the bottom line was;
The questions about orientation and where they were going were not listened to.
The second component was that when planes fly in the far north, the magnetic field requires consistent compass recalibration. Without recalibrating the compass, the bearing can be off by several degrees and, therefore, not take one to its intended destination.
• Recalibration is vital and life-giving for successful outcomes.
In this case, these two things, combined with other elements, created fatalities, not to mention all the repercussions for families, loved ones, colleagues, and the community itself.
We have all heard the clichés of that’s how it’s always been done, you have not been here long enough to know how we do things, or the patronizing that people in perceived lower roles receive so that the upper echelon is not listening and hearing what could be a simple fix when personnel is being communicated with, not to!
I confess I have the perfect excuse not to listen and hear the people around me; after all, I have a tired brain.
The only result of using this type of excuse is Groundhog Day. That sense of working harder, working faster, yet like being on a treadmill, the only thing that changes is the speed as progress or movement is not happening.
It is not a reset or restart, but it might be time to reframe and recalibrate!
From one tired brain to another?
• Look around; who are the people that you can receive encouragement from?
• Please take notice of the people who are open to sharing, but require us to be willing to listen and hear
• What are you doing to change gears instead of working harder, working smarter?
Please know that if you need encouragement and a private thinking partner, don’t hesitate to get in touch with me.