Last weekend, my friend gave me some tough love. He called me out on blaming other people for my hangover. It was all in fun, but there’s some truth to it. It’s so much easier to make excuses and avoid responsibility, especially when you’re feeling a bit ouchy.

This week’s tip is for anyone wondering where they may have some areas for improvement, who doesn’t have a spontaneously-call-you-out-on-your-BS friend like mine.


Avoid the pitfalls of our blindspots

Our blind spots are our personality areas that trip us up, without us knowing we have them. They may be completely obvious to those around us, but we ourselves are unaware.

Maybe we don’t realize we can be disrespectful, and that causes people to disengage from us. Perhaps we are very reactionary and don’t think things through before acting. Or we listen very selectively, ignoring red flags in conversations. We probably know others who do these things, but what about ourselves?

Here are three ways to find our own blind spots:

1. Audit our mistakes – situations or relationships that could have gone better. Try to pinpoint if there is something recurring that we’ve done leading up to the mistakes.

2. Ask others for honest feedback. Be accepting of criticism without becoming emotional or defensive. Use it to be constructive. Don’t get stuck ruminating on it. Remember your good traits as well.

3. Analyze our personality pros and cons, trying to see ourselves as others see us. Step away from the whirlwind of our life and take a deep dive into self evaluation.

Once we have awareness of our blind spots, we then have a choice of whether we want to work on them or not. Without awareness, we are set up to fall, by our own doing. When we know our personality irritants, we can decide if it’s important to us, and when to go down that road.

Take action: If you try the mentioned three approaches to find your blind spots, and can’t reveal them, you may need a professional to give it to you straight. Find someone who can discuss the less than great issues in your life and help you figure out your part in it. (Unless of course, you’re perfect!)

:: Inspired by Robert Bruce Shaw’s book, Leadership Blindspots