Why is it a human race?
We talk about being a member of the human race. Does that mean that we are in competition with each other? How did that term come into being? Why are we not just humans?
Merlinda and I were discussing this the other day. We work with people, who work with people. We are fortunate to work in many different countries and cultures and we have found that people are people all over the world.
We appreciate the diversity that exists in every country, every culture and every organisation. The reality is that when you get more than one person in a room or conversation, you have diversity. They are not twins, (unless of course they are identical but that is just on the outside). There will be differences in age, height, weight, colouring and thinking. It is the beauty of the uniqueness of each individual, the contribution that they can make to others and the world, that makes the work that we do so amazing.
Underneath the uniqueness, we find there is a great similarity in the people we work with. They all have hopes and dreams, values and beliefs by which they live their lives. They also have fears and challenges. We are all living in a time of great uncertainty and have been through a pandemic which overturned many comfort zones and assumptions of how our lives will unfold. If you cut anyone, they will bleed.
What have we been learning on our journey?
That many people do feel that they are in a race. The speed of change is challenging us to keep up, or get ahead. It can be exhausting. Life is a marathon and not a sprint which means that it is not possible to move at full power all the time. Our bodies were not made for it. There is day and night and that suggests that there is time to work and time to rest.
Physical exhaustion is one thing and can be obvious and acknowledged. Mental and emotional exhaustion is not visible and therefore can go unnoticed, leading to more serious illnesses and burnout. We all need to pause and rest at times in order to get up and carry on.
Part of our work with organisations and individuals is often to slow down the process long enough for people to gain clarity about what they really want and are aiming for, about their current reality and resources so they can find the way forward. Slowing down may seem challenging for many as we have come to value speed and action. The reality though is that when we slow down and take time to think we can move forward much faster. In Nancy Kline’s famous words:
“the quality of everything we do is dependent on the quality of thinking that we do first“
At Chameleon Skills, we take time to engage with people because we are curious to understand their uniqueness and what is important for them. When we work with teams we engage them in getting to know each other, appreciating the shared values and purpose and the diversity that adds to the whole.
When people feel seen and heard they are able to open up and give so much more, without fear of being rejected or considered as different. The difference is felt in the value that they add to the lives of all around them, their families, teams, organisations, and communities.
As we said at the start, we believe that people are people all over the world. As Kofi Annan said:
“We may have different religions, different languages and different coloured skin but we all belong to one human race.“
Let us help you appreciate and harness the power of the diversity that sits in your organisation.
For more on our offerings, feel free to go to our website: www.chameleonskills.com