Good Instincts

“Good instincts tell you what to do long before your head has figured it out.” — Michael Burke

People want reasons or explanations for your decisions, behavior, opinions, and judgments. They want to know “why” along with knowing “what.” They need to make sense of things and look to you for reasons and explanations. The problem is that you frequently struggle with providing adequate, accurate responses to the questions and concerns. Often, those decisions, behavior, opinions, and judgments were primarily based on intuitive insights and processes. This means that you don’t actually know “why.” The best you can do at times is, “It felt right,” or “It seemed like a good idea at the time.” If pressed, you “construct” a reason or explanation; but it’s definitely post hoc and likely does not account for the “what” of the event or circumstance. A much more accurate response would be, “I just went with my hunch,” although people are seldom satisfied with that as the reason or explanation.

Like You Expect

“Look to make your course regular, that men may know beforehand what they may expect.” — Francis Bacon

You treat other people like you expect to be treated. Sure, it’s a “Golden Rule” kind of thing but that isn’t the point here. While other people treat others differently than they expect to be treated and treat some people one-way and others another, you generally have one set of behaviors and attitudes that you use in most all interpersonal situations. Your consistent style with people has one important benefit. It lets you gage conformity and variation in the behavior and attitudes of other people and of specific individuals at different times. This is in part why you are so good at “reading people.” You are the “constant” in the “reading people” equation, while other people are the “variables.”

Your Proper Role

“Do not worry about holding high position; worry rather about playing your proper role.” — Confucius

You clearly understand your roles with people. You have a real knack for knowing that being the leader does not mean that one always takes the lead, is always in charge, or is always the one to whom others turn for advice, guidance, or direction. This enables you to easily and smoothly change roles from person to person and with a specific person as situations and circumstances shift over time. Among other things, this means that you can shift to being the follower/subordinate as easily as you can take charge. The transitions are likely automatic and intuitive, without conscious thought or decision. You just know what is called for in any particular situation.

Seldom Impatient

“When someone is impatient and says, ‘I haven’t got all day,’ I always wonder, How can that be? How can you not have all day?” — George Carlin

You are seldom impatient or in a hurry. This is in part because you tend to stay relaxed and relatively laid-back; but there are two more important reasons. First, you are seriously interested in other people and in what they have to say. Allowing time to listen is thus something that you value and want to do. Second, you are able to plan and arrange things so you have time and don’t need to rush or become impatient. You have an uncanny ability to be places just in time, have things done just in time, and to be available just in time when others need to talk. This extends to managing your schedules so there is always enough time to calmly take care of whatever needs your attention now.

Conform To The Criteria

“See first that the design is wise and just; that ascertained, pursue it resolutely.” — William Shakespeare

You don’t use yourself as the standard for how others should think and feel or how others should act. You do develop complex criteria that apply to specific situations and circumstances and you generally conform to those criteria. Here is the key. You conform to the criteria; but whether others choose to use those criteria is their choice. If you think their conforming is in their interest, you are clear about that. Still, the choice is theirs.