Part of The Company
A theatre magic show, even a solo show, demonstrates the work of many more people than just the performers. There are the writers, directors and producers. There are the magic inventors, prop makers and costume designers. Not forgetting the backstage crew, front of house and promotional team. Many different people, and many different types of people, work together to make a successful show.
The same is true with work and life in general.
Life works much better when we realise that we are all different and we all need each other. We need to work out how we tick and then work out how we can all best tick together.
St Paul talked about us all being like a human body. The eye can’t say to the hand, “I don’t need you!”
In the last few years I have encountered different personality type analysis tools. Firstly I came across the Myers Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI). Next, a few years later was the Enneagram and then, very recently DISC.
The MBTI has been around a long time. You may well know your type. I am INFJ, although I am pretty balanced in most areas, so some of it was a close call.
The Enneagram was revolutionary for our family. It has been around for thousands of years, invented by Sufi mystics. Until relatively recently its workings were kept secret, meaning that those in the know appeared to have prophetic or mind-reading ability.
You can go very deep with the Enneagram, and many do. It enables you to identify your coping strategies, built up over the course of your life and then, with that enhanced self-awareness, you can work out how to grow and how to get along better with others.
DISC was talked about at a Professional Speaking Association meeting recently by the marvellous Michelle Mills-Porter. It is an instantly-accessible concept – everyone is assigned a colour depending on their personality type – red, blue, green or yellow. You can discern your colour quite quickly, and that of other people. This can give you instant tools to know how to talk to someone or how to reply to their emails. I have only scratched the surface of this, but it warrants further study.
It is well worth exploring some of these (and other) tools.
Different is OK, Different is Good
A key lesson for me from all of these is that we are all different and that’s OK. We are all coping in different ways and that means we react in different ways to life. Once you have an awareness of the types, it allows for much better relationships; it stops you expecting everyone to react like you and gives you an insight into other worldviews.
They can help you to know yourself, therefore working out you optimum work style, your strengths and weaknesses, your coping strategies and things to avoid.
And they can also help you to work better with other people.
As result, the magic show of your life could be amazing.