I love traveling. For all the obvious reasons, of course.
But also because it offers me the world as my lab for
studying people and behavior.
Returning from my honeymoon, I joined a crowd that was waiting
for luggage to turn up on the baggage carousel. I heard a sky cap
say to no one in particular, "I don't know much. I'm just a sky
cap, but you might want to look in the pile of left luggage."
No one seemed to pay attention, even though he said it a few times.
But I did, and I found my bag among the orphans(somehow it had
made an earlier flight than I had.)
The whole episode made me wonder about what happens when we
fail to see ourselves as powerful.
In this context, I'm defining powerful as having the ability to
make something happen or have superior knowledge. In the context
of the airport and baggage, the sky cap was powerful to me
and anyone else who wanted their luggage. Yet, he downplayed his
knowledge and power. Sound familiar?
Have you ever spoken about being a mediator in a kinda apologetic
way? If so, you diminished your power by doing so. That
reticence, that resistance to owning one's power is one of the
reasons I think mediators have so much trouble
building profitable practices.We don't see ourselves as powerful or valuable!
In fact, it's quite the contrary. Mediators are so powerful in a
- Mediators have the ability to help others see themselves
and the world in an entirely new light.
- We bring value by assisting others to make connection and feel
- We can help others to change their world.
I realize this notion may rub some folks the wrong way.
Seeing ourselves as powerful challenges the tenets of self-determin-
ation and neutrality for some, I suppose. It may be true in part,
but I'd rather believe the following:
"As we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people
permission to do the same."
PS Many thanks to those readers who sent along best wishes for my
wedding. I couldn't resist sharing one picture of the beautiful
setting and magical feeling that surrounded us that day.