“The answer lies within us” is a common approach to self development as seen through various leadership, spiritual, and coaching practices. Under this philosophy the leader, guru, or coach is tasked with not providing the answer, but helping the individual find the answer for themselves through a series of questions.
Now consider that people’s blindspots truly are their blindspots. That no matter how quiet their minds are, aligned they are towards their purpose or goals, or how many “good coaching questions” we ask them, they still will not be able to find the answer. The answer lies in their blindspot. And we can’t see into our blindspots. (If we could, it wouldn’t be considered a blindspot.)
Also consider that we experience things using the language we have. I can experience new tastes when my brain scans my memory for words like delicious, fruity, and chocolate. I can experience anger when I know the combination of phrases “heightened heart rate,” “strong emotion,” and “unhappy.” When I am aware of it, I can describe it. And I experience what I can describe.
Connecting these two considerations…
Maybe to see into our blindspots, we simply need some new language. I can better understand and describe the pain in my leg when the doctor asks “is the pain dull or sharp?” She looks at my body with different distinctions than I do. When she shares them with me, I too can experience my body in a different way. Similarly, a vocal coach working with a new vocalist starts by teaching her what a scale is. He teaches her about the diaphragm muscle and how to use it for her breathing. He teaches a new language and then invites her to use it to create new art.
Next time we reach inside our toolbox of “good, self-reflective questions” in a coaching situation, let’s ask ourselves if a new distinction would be more valuable than a new question. Poking around in blindspots can be painful if we don’t use the appropriate tools.
Pick of the Post: Jason Mraz – Silent Love Song