Jessica Soroky Guest Post #5: Awareness Is the First Step

I began this guest-blogging journey because I wanted a way to keep responsibility in my face all the time without the need of an external force.

I had an epiphany, or what I like to call a “Well, sh*t!”moment while writing this post.

To be clear, a “Well, sh*t” moment for me is how I react when I have a breakthrough. It’s how I have come to process the feelings an epiphany causes.

I kept putting off writing this week, allowing one justification or another to get in the way. I had an arsenal of excuses ready and waiting: I was in the midst of job hunting, and most of the jobs I found would mean weekly travel or total relocation to a new city.

I finally sat down, telling myself to just get the writing done so I can go back to my excuses. (You have to love some good old-fashioned obligation).

I wrote a sentence, then two, and then erased them. I’d get a paragraph done and then start another one with a different path and erase them both.

I quickly noticed nothing was flowing. My delete button was getting worn out.

What was the problem?

I started to introspect — it wasn’t just today that I was off, the last three days had been miserable. Confrontation after confrontation happened with my family, friends, and my boss.

In the midst of an argument, one of those where you don’t even know what you are arguing about, my boss made me aware that there was one common factor in all these confrontations: ME.

This realization can hurt, but don’t be afraid to stop when everything seems to be blowing up and look for the common denominator. Awareness is the first step.

The problem I was having writing the blog was the same problem that caused all the confrontation…once again, me.

So I stopped typing. I just paused. I was clearly below the line.

Well, sh*t!

My intention to create a blog post that would keep me aware of what mental process I was in was working.

Have you ever felt like you just keep running into a brick wall, or that everything around you is falling apart?

Pause for a second, and look for the root cause. What mental state are you in? Obligation? Blame? Justify?

I finally got about three-fourths of a blog post written, and when I was re-reading it, and I became truly aware I hadn’t been in the state of responsibility in days.

If that was true, how could I write a blog post about just that, responsibility?

So I deleted the post.

But why hide that I wasn’t in a state of responsibility? After all, if you have ever read one of Christopher’s blog posts, attended his workshops, or participated in a The Leadership Gift™ Program Mastery call, you too are aware that we all drop below the line all the time.

We are all human — beautifully flawed humans.

But society teaches us to pretend that we aren’t flawed, that we are different.

My intention with this blog post was to share my journey. Let’s get real then, I am human! My journey, just like yours, is not always going to be perfect.

This blog post is evidence of my intention for awareness, and my intention to use that awareness to take responsibility.

Do you have a tool, an individual, or even a team you have given permission to raise your awareness?

My boss always says, “To solve a problem, you simply have to exploit it.” Becoming aware of what mental state you are in, is in essence like exploiting something to yourself and therefore solving the problem.

For me, sometimes having that “Well, sh*t” moment, realizing I’m not acting from a state of responsibility, is enough.

It’s a signal to get out of the state of blame, shame, justify, or obligation and to ask myself, “What can I do about this situation?”

Awareness is the first step — what can you do today to help yourself become more aware?

Jessica Soroky, CSM
Only 21 years old, Jessica is already a Certified Scrum Master with two years of practice in agile delivery and team leadership. She is also the youngest participant in the The Leadership Gift™ Program and its growing worldwide community of leaders and coaches. After five years of non-profit development through Nellie’s Catwalk for Kids, Jessica continues her leadership journey in state government, not-for-profit, and private sector leadership studies.

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Posted in Collaboration, Leadership, Responsibility, Teamwork on 10/09/2013 01:00 am
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