Leadership Skills: How To Expand Your Reality For Greater Rapport and Success

world in handsWant to have far greater rapport with huge numbers of people?

Here’s a breakthrough strategy I learned years ago from teacher, friend, and responsibility expert Bill McCarley. It is both simple and extraordinarily powerful:

Try on as many different realities as you can, as rapidly as possible.

How do you do that?

Every time you encounter another person’s behavior, mindset, or choice that lies outside of your chosen reality, then expand your potential reality to include it.

When people around us do things that are outside of our reality, we are usually jolted in some way. So there’s your sign.

When this happens, say to yourself, “This behavior, mindset or choice must make perfect sense within that way of life. I can really understand it by trying on (in my mind) the entire way of life that goes with that behavior, mindset or choice.”

If you find yourself balking at the idea of trying on a particular reality in your mind, simply give yourself permission to “not choose” it after you’ve mentally examined it.

You don’t have to adopt every reality you try on! For instance, living life as an aerospace engineer exists as a possibility “within” my reality, yet I don’t choose it. Nor do I choose to be a social misfit, a demanding 2-year-old, a cold-hearted smuggler, an actor, a Somali pirate, a high-powered lawyer, or an other-worldly alien in order to try on those realities.

Until you’ve looked at other peoples’ behaviors, mindsets or choices from within their ways of life, you will remain less than fully capable of establishing rapport with a multitude of people — what an unfortunate waste of amazing opportunities.

You can’t share a reality you haven’t experienced (at least mentally). It’s that simple.

And as I mentioned in one of my latest blog posts, “The Three Components of Fabulous Rapport“, shared reality varies exactly and in conjunction with psychological closeness and communication in creating and maintaining high rapport. As the classic lyric  goes, “You can’t have one without the other….”

Get Started With This Week’s 5-Minute Stretch

Select an associate with whom you have low rapport because you have low shared reality. Now look at this person’s behavior, mindset, or choices from their reality. Do this until you see how perfect their life and choices are from within that reality.

Once you can expand your reality to include another peoples’, see if either your ability to communicate with them, or your psychological closeness increases. Can you reach them more easily? Feel more compassion? More empathy? More connection?

With these assets, what can you do next to increase rapport?

When you’ve mastered this simple skill, you’ll be on your way to great rapport with … the whole world.

What rapport challenges or success cases do you have? Share your insight in a comment! Or post your question about it.

Leaders and coaches: Hone your integrative skills in the Leadership Gift Program. CEO’s desiring a culture of diverse unity may want to investigate the proven Managed Leadership Gift Adoption program.

Christopher Avery, PhD, is a recognized authority on how individual and shared responsibility works in the mind and an advisor to leaders worldwide.

Posted in Leadership on 10/08/2012 09:45 am
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