Tuesday, October 26, 2010

The Experience of Criticism

Have you ever looked at what is going on inside you when you avoid acknowledging someone, when you are engaged in diminishing another's point of view, then speeding up the "tempo" of your conversation? What is really going on here? More importantly, how does it all feel to you, deep inside?

Have you ever stopped for a moment to contemplate this, the effect it has on your state, the impact that this way of communicating has on your happiness and freedom, and ultimately your success on every level? Historically, many salesmen have been taught to sell this way. It becomes all about "closing the sale" in any way you can, which ultimately becomes a highly intense form of intimidation, where the customer is backed into a corner, not being given much of a chance to say anything and afraid to say what he really feels inside. This process contains an enormous amount of anxiety and pressure for the customer but, more significantly, it sets the salesman off into burnout mode.

This way of treating ourselves and other people ultimately ends in failure. Success, true success, continues be ever elusive, even after you have made all the money you can spend in this lifetime. How many times in my life, after making a lucrative sale the night before, have I held my breath as I my phone rang the next morning, only to hear the customer say that he had thought about it and changed his mind, wanting to cancel. I could feel the anxiety I used to feel in the pit of my stomach rise up, even now, as I write this. The difference is that I'm aware of it now, I wasn't then. Imagine, walking around in life, everyday, feeling this anxiety in the pit of your stomach? My hunch is that it is safe to say that this condition is epidemic in our culture.

When we don't acknowledge another person, when we don't really listen and "hear" what she is thinking and feeling, we are diminishing her, trying to control her and the outcome in our favor. Without seeing who a person is, without allowing him to express himself as he is, we are not seeing "WHAT IS.!" What we are seeing is not real. What we are seeing is not true. It's a projection of what we want to see, not what is! Only what is is true. An amazing insight arises for us when we ask ourselves this wonderful question: How can we change what is?

On the other hand, if we allow a person to express what he feels, to ask questions, to open up and feel comfortable, we begin to learn about his true needs and values. Then we can see how we can really help this person. This kind of acknowledgment creates trust. Trust creates relationship, whether it be in business, family, friends or government.

Most people buy from people they trust. Relationships thrive in an environment of trust. When you don't acknowledge me, how can I trust you? What is it that I am so afraid of that I can't acknowledge you for who you are? For who you are is what is. There is no right or wrong about this, only acknowledging what is. There is so much freedom in this, so much love. Imagine, caring enough about another human being that you would look at him exactly the way he is, past all of your wants and desires, and give them their freedom. Imagine that!

Love and blessings,


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