This course was created by Pete Mockaitis of How to Be Awesome at Your Job. We are pleased to offer this training in our library.
Skill Level Beginner
- [Host] We talked about the main principle or concept is people as people. Can you give us a little bit more of background on just sort of the conceptual piece and then I want to hear how it came alive for HG. - [Guest] Yeah, let's clarify all of this. You know, especially because the subtitle of my book is how seeing people as people changes everything and the question I get all the time is how else am I going to see them. Obviously they're people. So it does bare talking about. So the point isn't that Arbinger or I or anybody thinks that anyone really doesn't know that people are people and thinks of them as subhuman or anything like that. That's not what we're talking about. But the point is this. When I am focused and kind of obsessed with my own interests and my goals and the things I'm trying to accomplish and my fears and my dreams when that's the only thing that I'm caring about and thinking about then the people around me only enter my thoughts in so far as they have an impact on the things I'm trying to accomplish. And I don't think about them beyond that. So if I'm trying to get a promotion at work then my coworkers, I only even see them as far as they impact that. So she might be a competitor, someone else who's trying to get that promotion and that's all I see. This is a person I'm competing with, how do I drag her down, how do I make myself look good in comparison to her. And he might not be in the running for the promotion and he kind of likes me and maybe he'll say something good about me to the higher ups. And so I only see him in so far as I can use him for that purpose. Now the reason we say that seeing people like that is like seeing them as objects is because it reduces them to functional. But the person who's a competitor for the promotion for me in the office that is not, that's not why she exists. She doesn't exist to compete with me. She has her own life. She grew up somewhere. She has perspective. She has a culture she came from. She had hurts when she was young, and triumphs, and all of these things have made her the person she is and she has her own goals and her own reasons and there are just thousands of things inside her mind and in her life having her act the way she does and bringing her to this point. But when I'm only thinking about myself I don't see any of that in her. All I see is I want a promotion, she might get in my way. Just like she was just a pen that wasn't producing ink. And when we see people as objects like that the problem is, I mean obviously, that's not fair to her. She doesn't exist for me, he doesn't exist for me. It's just, it's not fair to people. They don't like that feeling of being seen like an object. And it's also false. When I see somebody, just a thin sliver and that's all I care about them I'm missing a lot. She might have a very good reason for wanting this promotion. She might be a better fit for the promotion than I am, or maybe not, but I don't know. As long as all I can see is she's a competitor like an object competitor I can't see anything else and there are bound to be important things that I'm missing. And so that's why in the Arbinger materials you'll find them talking about being in the box because when we see other people as though they were just objects our perspective is so limited that it's like being locked in a box where we can only see a few things. I can only see the stuff that matters to my goals. I can't see anything else. And it's a way of being blinkered. In my book I talk about it as being kind of blind because we miss so many important and crucial things and it leaves us unable to solve problems and build relationships when we're seeing others in that shallow object-like way.