It’s one of those really simple concepts that is incredibly easy to say, and much harder to do. At least, on any sort of consistent basis. For many of us. For some, it comes naturally.
Look at things from the other person’s point of view.
No, I mean REALLY. Stop. Put yourself in their shoes. What do they have going on? How would they look at this situation? What factors are affecting or influencing them right now? How might that affect their perspective? Their decision? Their ability to act?
I know the power of this one because it is definitely not a skill which comes naturally to me. I am just not wired to stop and consider another person’s perspective. Not in any depth. But it is a skill I have acquired over the years, and it all started by someone else stopping me and pointing out that I was failing to do it.
Think of a telescope. Looking up at the sky with the naked eye, you may notice a few stars, maybe pick out a couple of constellations. If you’re in a dark enough area, you might see a shooting star, see a planet or two, and find even more constellations. But when you pick up a telescope, everything changes. Suddenly, you see things you never even knew were there! You can see detail you may have suspected or imagined or heard about, but couldn’t see or really understand without the telescope. Maybe you even develop a completely new appreciation for what you’re looking at.
So get out your telescope for those around you. For those you work with, work for, and want to interact with. Stop and ask yourself the questions which can help you see things from their perspective. Not only might it save you from the proverbial meteor shower, but it could give you the ability to see the shooting stars, the complexity, and the beauty you may have otherwise missed.