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Here’s another example of getting it at meta level.
Harry said when he retired he wanted to get away from it all. He retired to Comfort, Texas (great name isn’t it, and a place where many people retire), bought 12 acres of land and turned 11 of them into a natural habitat. He can see stars at night, and hear birds during daytime. He putters around house listening to music, reading, spending time on Internet. His social life consists of his wife and occasionally his grown children. He rarely leaves his land.
Martha, too, wanted to get away from it all when she retired. She bought a house in an active retirement community in Alabama’s Gulf Coast, and bought a catamaran. She fills her days with volunteer activities, entertaining on land and on sea, daycaring her grandchildren after school, and taking commercial cruises every several months, traveling all over world on group tours.
What’s up with that? Harry have been a primary care physician, his days filled with people, demands and crises since his medical school days. He wanted what he called “peace” – no people, nothing he had to do.
Martha had lived with someone like Harry, rather isolated as a full-time homemaker who did bookkeeping part-time from her home. She rarely saw people, and they entertained infrequently because of her husband’s demanding schedule and reclusive nature. In retirement, when her husband died, Martha wanted lots of people and activities, and getting out and going places.
They both said they wanted to get away from it all, yet one fled to exactly what other was avoiding. The meta level would tell you they wanted to get away from – what they had been doing before. Since each “before” was different, each “after” was different. So while they were doing different particular things, at meta-level, they were doing same thing.
It’s common thread. They both wanted to get away from it all, but they each had their own definition. Was it different from your definition? Each person’s definition is uniquely different; how different, you’d be surprised.
Men are from Mars and women are from Venus, but it’s more complex than that. Each of us lives in our own little planet, and it’s in our heads!
And by way, if understanding what’s going on with other people doesn’t interest you, that’s a given as well. I find all time in training EQ coaches, that some people are interested in insight and meta-cognition, while others aren’t at all. Some want only WHAT, and not WHY. Either route can take you to home base. However, getting WHY allows you to navigate by stars, while only knowing WHAT keeps you map-bound.
It may be easier to accept that other people are different, that to accept that YOU are different. We’re all after same thing, but our means of getting it, and particulars of what it looks like, could hardly be more different. If you’re kind of person who seeks to understand “why” of other people, look to meta level. Find common thread.
When you see something different, ask yourself how it’s same. And if you don’t understand at any given level, inquire. I remember planning a vacation with a friend some years ago. “And let’s not get a car,” she said. “I’m sick of all hassle.”
At time I had a job 20 minutes from my home where I sat at a desk all day, ate lunch in building cafeteria, and then went home and stayed home, as my husband was on-call most of time. It wasn’t until years later, when I took a job in marketing (which is what my friend did at time of vacation) and was in my car all day and night that I understood just what a hassle “a car” can be.
Now when someone asks me to take a “vacation” with them, I check it out. If I’m after Broadway shows and fancy restaurants and they want to climb mountains and wear Birkenstocks, we’re in trouble. Using your EQ means understanding emotions that are our motivating factors and learning to work with them.
©Susan Dunn, MA, EQ/Life Coach, http://www.susandunn.cc . Susan emotional intelligence for life improvement; trains and certifies EQ coaches. She is the author of “How to Live Your Life with Emotional Intelligence,” and “How to Develop Your Child’s EQ.” She offers Internet courses, ebooks and individual and group work. Mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org for info, FREE ezine. Visit the ebook library -www.webstrategies.cc/ebooklibrary.html .