The How of Professional/Personal Development

“He did it again today!” Joe complained into the phone, Just like last week, he did it again today! I am so sick and tired of working for the jerk.” 

Joe hired me six weeks ago. Said he needed someone to help him jumpstart his career. Said his boss is a jerk and half the people he works with are incompetent.

I signed on and began listening. We had a couple of meetings. Joe was eager for me to share some magical insight of how to eliminate jerks and incompetent people from his life.

(Perhaps I could sell Pixie Dust as part of my service.)

Reflecting back to Joe what I was hearing from him was not something Joe wanted to hear. It was a lot like the quote from Captain Jack Sparrow in Pirates of the Caribean,

“You see, the problem is not the problem.

The problem is your attitude about the problem.”

Like most of us, Joe (not his real name), did not realize the truth about Career/Professional Development. Professional Development is actually and always, Personal Development.

Think of it like a ‘blind spot.’ We all have blind spots. We just don’t know what they are, because if we did know, they wouldn’t be blind spots.

Imagine yourself without blind spots;

Imagine the things you see.

Imagine the things you do.

Once Joe saw that he might not see everything, we were able to progress. We dove into The How of Personal Development,sm an ongoing, four stage method of expanding our vision and awakening our brilliance.

  1. Be Open – A willingness to (consider that I might) be wrong.

This is very valuable and very difficult for most of us. We think we’re open, yet typically, we’re myopic and ignorant of our own attitudes and behaviors, our ‘ways of being.’ These ways of being are the things that others experience, they just don’t say anything. And that is how, without even realizing it, we provoke others to resist us.

2. Feedback – A reflection, from others.

Yes, kind of like a mirror. We receive feedback continuously. Often not communicated with words, rather body language. It can be as obvious as storming from a room, or subtle as an eyebrow or a dimple on someone’s cheek.

3. Awareness – “We never truly see ourselves, ‘til we see ourselves through the eyes of others.”

Self-Awareness is created through this process. With awareness we are able to Self-Regulate, based on our assessment of the feedback.

4. Choice – “A Consciously Processed Personal Preference,sm” is the key.

It is true personal empowerment. At this point, whether the process happens in a blink, few seconds or, even days, each of us is empowered to behave with a ‘chosen response’ rather than ‘emotional reaction.’

Thanks to this process Joe is discovering and overcoming the real barriers to his success.

Thanks to his expanded vision,

Joe has empowered himself, and truly awakened his brilliance.

Things are better at work; Things are better at home. As they should be.

Call me, I’d love to assist you.


Ray Buttars

Executive Mentor