Give a hand to your inner child

You are struggling to trust others? Did you check your level of confidence with yourself first ?

Once upon a time, in a beautiful countryside of France, a young child, Cedric, was enjoying life wherever and with whoever he was: at school, with his friends and his family.

Up to 10 years old, he used to be the one reconciliate kids in trouble in the recreation area, the one in contact with all cultures without making any differences of consideration. In other world, part of the multicultural team but too out of the box for other kids from the supposedly same origin.

Consequently, Cedric enjoyed making its birthdays with many kids in the garden, plenty of marvellous souvenir until the age 12 years old. What could happen that stops this dynamic? This way to explore life by being nourish with differences? Learning from others?

Two minors’ tendencies came at this age: the slight remarks from its private circle (family) and the school ones about…? Yes, that’s it! About his capacity to go ahead, to make it happen, to pass to the next level and finally being able to be the right child at the right place in the right category due to the current social and educational system.

Then, Cedric went through various states of mind of mistrust feeling from others due to his incapacity to fill in into those system because of his natural and legitim wish to be himself and explore his unicity. His mother went “on war” to make sure her son keeps on track and develops a bubble of “too much trust” probably to balance what happened outside in the meantime. Consequently, we can question the famous egg and the chicken… Who came first? His loss of confidence in himself or the lack of trust from others? Obviously, it is both my captain!

Here we are, for the readers who were thinking when we will, effectively, discuss the trust topic. In fact, the goal was to share with you an intimate story, mine (very private, thanks in advance to not share 😊) in order to take you in the observer role, give a hand to this child and understand his way of thinking. It’s all what is about trust: It’s begun by being confident with yourself. Why? Because how to leave your “predict and control” mode if you are not confident with the image you think you reflect… Moreover, how to develop trust with others, developing a mechanism of delegation, “sense and response” mode if you are not even capable to do it for yourselves!

Before getting back to the story I am sure you are impatient to find out the next step, I would like to emphasize the aspect of our proper power, control of our image, behaviours and feelings. Then, our “co-responsibility” of the relation we build, maintain or abandon with other. Yes, we are never fully in the victim or the guilty role guy because never fully the spectator of our life except if it’s our choice. In that specific case, we have to admit it: it is our bloody choice, there is no one to blame except ourself and our limiting beliefs. Here are few examples: no, I know that I/he will fail; I am sure that I/he cannot do it. The other way round is also true: he said I/he will not be able to do it; he thinks I/he will fail, etc.

Trust is about seeing the potential of each situation as it is and not as it was or will be because both went through our “mental” filter. Seeing all the people concerned in that specific context without looking for shortcut to get quick answer do’s and don’ts even our brain loves to focus on the next topic of the day based on what happened in the past or what should happen in a supposedly future. 

So, how this boy went through his teenager’s transformation to be this “today’s man”? To know every little step, you will have to contact him directly but in the main lines, the trust in other comes back with the confident in himself little by little, by quick wins and others micro changes with high level of impact.

If I look in the rear-view mirror, it is always when I embrace my work, task, action or decision with empathy, sincerity, curiosity and humility with other that I have been at the level I wanted. Why? expressly because it is me who cannot be false, wrong, too much or not enough, I deliver what I know I can deliver in that context “right here, right now”: It has a sense to me and so for the others.

Moreover, a key aspect in this virtuous circle between confidence and trust is the way you are going to live your relationship with the one (s) concerns: the more you will be straight and sincere, the more you will, effectively, make the emotional intelligence “on”. The capacity we have to imagine that following the rules is to make sure we do not see us out of the box or do not make any wave at all is definitely and 100% wrong even we all do that sometime…

In addition, the mirror effect will influence, in the good way, the attitude of your friends or colleagues during one-to-one session first before to get into the collective step where other parameters have to be taken into account.

The other way round will only give the “rational” aspect of your relation: what is that? Two human beings having a relationship based 100% on the rational, that is really sad and clearly unproductive. Also, it is the best way to interpret badly the communication (behaviours and words) between the two and so take the wrong decision!

During my career, I experimented it, firstly without knowing it but after a few years I could clearly evaluate the difference. An example that came into my mind is a collective bargaining to implement in a company where all stakeholders should be involved. In a first step, I was sincerely thinking that make sure we stick to the plan, have the right sources and 100% in accordance to the law are the most important. Once we have said that, I did not clearly read between the lines that the law request to take the time needed with all the stakeholders and not just “tick the box of the meetings done”. When we finalise the work and realise the employees did not follow the frame they supposedly contribute to design, I did not blame the way we work but themselves first by defense and imagine that there is no other alternative. Then, times and strong link with the administration and key employees took me out of my comfort zone for a mutual interest. Me as a counsellor of the management team and the employees as a responsibility to be effective contributors. Few years later, when the updated version has to be designed, we did it properly and the result was much more efficient for an adequation between the needs, the constraints and the common understanding of collective bargaining’s essence. Yes, having a common understanding is key before going to the next step, make sure you are in an active listening mode to reformulate your interpretation of what has been said.

Paradoxically, it is due to the empathy you develop to understand the others and the place you give to emotional intelligence on top of the rational one that the autonomy will be and leave the supposedly micromanagement needed to make it happen and achieve the goal (elaborate by the manager himself QED)

Once I learn from this, I deploy in another company a continuous improvement methodology with all the directors and people who should be involved, the result and feedback were much better. Here we illustrate, the virtuous of failure, another way to build trust because “in real life” and not in a roleplay where there is no place for human: fail fast, learn fast (Thomas Edison).

From a 2022 perspective: Now with hybrid work and at distance how to do differently than having trust? Before seeing when to trust the others and when not, let’s focus on why you develop, the vision you have to yourself, your relatives, your colleagues… to the entire world. By looking at the original cause by yourself or with some useful help, you will discover the unlimited field of possibilities. I am waiting for your honest and sincere feedback after this shift. Again, we are not particularly talking about 180°, a 10° one and you will see the impact on each relation in your everyday life, my bet is that it will be your revolution.

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