In a podcast on the neuroscience of coaching, I have recently heard Ann Betz say, that reality on every level is a co-created process.
She gave the example of sound: Sound involves a speaker and a listener. Scientifically speaking, if a tree falls in a forest and there is no listener, consequently there is no sound.
To be sure, a falling tree emits soundwaves, but without a receiver, the actual sound does not occur.
Isn’t that a great metaphor for our interactions with each other, at the workplace and at home? We are co-creating our reality every minute.
That’s very apparent in office dynamics, with behind-other’s-back-conversations and loaded silence. Someone in the office might say something at a meeting, and some of us just roll eyes or quickly look to find something interesting in their smart phones. And others might react to the same communication by engaging in conversation. Both has an effect on both the sender and the receiver.
We see our reality with our own eyes, and through our reactions we co-create.
This might lead to productive interaction, to conflict, or to staying out of each other’s way.
It sits uncomfortably that anyone can change unhealthy dynamics and is thus responsible for the reactive spaces we find ourselves in.
So what’s important is that we get conscious about our reactions and their underlying patters. Then we can be at full choice in any moment. Instead of falling prey to our reactive patterns, we can own them, and chose what to do with them. This is not about not reacting, but about adding reflection that allows us to stay at choice.
It is a leader’s job to help their people develop this sense of co-creation whilst not making them wrong for their reactions.
After all, we are all just humans, trying to make sense of our reality. And we all have an incredible potential for continuous growth.