I was at the gym today and any of you that go to Planet Fitness have seen the signs all over saying 'No Gymtimidation'. I kept thinking about that phrase during the time I was there. They have a 'no tolerance' policy for any criticism, bullying, or bad mouthing of any kind there. But does that stop anyone from thinking those things? I did a lot of observing today and most people seem to be staring nowhere in particular. But I noticed every time someone new came in the door, most people turned their heads to look. A sign on the wall cannot stop what people think.
This got me to thinking about when I was managing Digestive Health Center a few years ago. I did an exercise with my staff. Most of you are FB friends and will probably remember this. I had everyone write down three bad things about everyone in the room including myself. I gave them two minutes to do it. I think there were about ten employees at that time. Most finished the task well under two minutes. Then I had everyone write one good thing about each person in the room and gave them five minutes to do it. Only about four managed to complete the task.
It is so much easier to find fault with others. Much easier than looking for the good. It takes less energy and it feeds the anxiety that is so prevalent today. It is not easy to make the change to look for the good. Next time you are in a public place and see different people, practice thinking of a compliment instead of a criticism. It isn't always easy, but the more you practice that attitude, the easier it becomes. I know the staff got tired of my teaching about 'attitude' and 'communication' but I think it did make a difference. And I think it will make a difference with us all if we just give it a try.