the ability to listen

i was watching Michelle Obama’s speech today and this women is the most smartest and clear woman i have ever listened too. her words pierced something profound in me. she said:

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“being president doesn’t change who you are, it reveals who you are.” – Michelle Obama

made me really think about the time when i was president of my union and how i struggled to find the right words to say to my fellow brothers and sisters. in the beginning, new to the position, i had no clue how to be a leader of my peers. i had to search for answers, get educated, learn the ways of the union. however, my struggle was not only defining this position but trying to believe in something that i opposed.

i believe unions are made up of people who look for glory. they aren’t about the people, they aren’t about trying to find answers or negotiating with company’s who refuse to change, unions strip away the humanity of people. it is a power trip, the name and mostly about money.

i now see i didn’t fail my people but only as a union representative because my beliefs were in my peers.

i wanted them to feel secure, understood and important. i wanted them to know that this leader would do whatever possible to make sure they get satisfaction in doing their job and not be treated like a number. management is never easy to deal with and i once believed i had a good working relationship with my manager but i see now, it was all about the power he had over me.

i allowed my self-growth to suffer because i wanted so much to believe that these people trusted in me and therefore dragged myself in a deep hole.

if only i had heard Michelle’s words 2 years ago, i would not be where i am today. i would still be representing my peers and evolving into a better way of working relationships. the definition of the ability to listen focuses on whether or not you listen to yourself.

although you believe at the time you are doing the right thing, maybe you should dig deeper to find out if there is something important you have missed.

i have attached Michelle’s speech in case you missed it. i hope the people of the USA really absorb this …


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