Out There

Part of the change and chaos of our times is that things once thought to be “out there” are coming to be found out as more regular than others wanted us to believe. The focus of the moment is sexual harassment. With recent allegations, “systems” built by harassers and methods to silence victims are out in the open more than ever.

What’s the lesson in this? It is to look critically at any statements made that you or someone else is “out there”. The phrase can be used to intimidate and cover up. Make your own analyses and always stay aware of others’ agendas when they accuse you or others of being out there. Most likely, it’s the situation that is out there and needs to be handled.

 

photo: geralt, pixabay.com

Uncovering Underlying Agendas

The agendas people have in the work world can undo the best of your intentions. Uncovering an underlying agenda of a colleague is not an easy task. However, one thing you can do is to take off the rose-color glasses and develop your ability to “read” a situation accurately.

In my early career, I had the best of intentions and often gave people the benefit of the doubt. I wanted to get along and be a good team member. After several disappointing wake-up calls, when underlying agendas caused me harm, I worked at getting smart about agendas. I did not want to swing the pendulum to suspicion or cynicism. I wanted to balance the pendulum, by getting wiser about people and being able to spot their agendas.

I started a practice that helped me quite a bit. I first found my neutral gear in assessing people. Instead of seeing what I wanted to see in people and letting that skew my judgment, I let people show me who they were. I reserved judgment until they did. I also, when I encountered a problem with someone, would write a “What I Know” list about him or her. That list had only facts regarding a person’s actions, not opinions or suppositions. I was surprised how much this helped and how much, in actuality, people would reveal their agendas. By taking off my rose color glasses, I was much more able to see a situation clearly and determine my next steps.

photo; holohololand, FreeDigitalPhotos.net