I decided to move forward on a project that I’ve been thinking about for years. I want to find several people who would like to contribute one chapter to a book I’m calling Beware: They Do Shoot the Messenger. I was asked to give an example, to clarify my vision for this book. Below is a draft of my chapter in the book. I hope it serves as an example for others who want to participate in this project.
Click this link to read the updated instructions I created for potential authors: bbest.com/InstructionsPotentialBewareAuthors.pdf
One of my talents is to recognize what is beneath the surface. I seem to know what people are really feeling, and needing, even if they want to hide or deny it.
As a child this was a problem. When I spoke up, announcing that I saw or felt things that people weren’t ready to acknowledge, it caused strong emotions of fear, anger, defensiveness, and denial. I would sometimes be attacked for calling attention to the truth that people weren’t ready to acknowledge.
I began to withdraw and protect myself by not saying anything.
Years ago KellyAnn Gage offered to do a Face Reading for me. It revealed traits, talents, and challenges. She gave me suggestions on how to develop my traits to be more effective and successful. At that time I also found Richard Unger, who did hand analysis. There were similarities in what they were showing me about myself. Currently I have a friend, Sandra Edwards, who does hand analysis. She is helping me discover more about myself and where I want to focus my attention. My friend Edna Soblin, a hand writing consultant, is helping me change my hand writing in order to improve my life.
Communication is an important focus in my life. What KellyAnn told me years ago was very helpful. She said that when I’m in a group I can quickly see where the group needs and wants to go. She suggested that the group would probably not be ready to hear the message. She suggested that I not withdraw, that I find a way to stay connected until the time was right to deliver the message.
In the years since I got this advice from KellyAnn I have observed my interactions in groups. I do see quickly where the group needs and wants to go. If I speak up too quickly, at the wrong time, it causes a ‘backlash’! I have experimented with different ways of dealing with this talent I have. What has worked well is for me to identify the most influential person in the group. I work with that influential person until they understand what I quickly knew was needed. When the time is right the influential person is more effective in delivering the message, along with a step by step plan and strategy to implement.
I have not always been effective in dealing with this talent. A couple years ago I got involved with a group that offers daily phone support calls. I found it interesting that the group wanted new people to join and get their support. However, what I noticed was that the dialogue and dynamics of the group was turning off many of the new people. There was fear and criticism and judgment, poorly disguised as jokes, which was making the goal of having new people join difficult. I chose to step in and speak up. The timing was wrong, and the group began to attack me as a teacher with tendencies of hurting people by forcing them to listen. I chose to drop out of the group when I got the message that you would to be ‘stupid’ to quit. I became defensive and it felt uncomfortable for me. I did the best I could, and there were several other reasons for my not continuing. I did not feel successful with that group.
Many of us are messengers. We have a message which is valuable. Timing is critical to delivering a message that will be heard. People need to be ready. I’ve learned that it is very important to deal with my own emotional issues. My childhood memories and pain can cloud my judgment and vision. I have been doing a lot of inner cleansing in the last couple years. I intend now to claim my talents and gifts, to use them wisely, in a loving way for myself and others.