Dec 21, 2023

Village Life

One of the Most Powerful Steps You Can Take Toward Living an Authentic Life is Recognizing You Cannot Do It Alone. 

Village Life

Photo by Shane Rounce on Unsplash

One of the Most Powerful Steps You Can Take Toward Living an Authentic Life is Recognizing You Cannot Do It Alone. 

You cannot be all things to all people and you cannot expect to achieve balance, much less outperform, exceed and transcend, without help from trusted friends, family and colleagues. It does indeed take a village. 

Asking For and Receiving Help is a Courageous and Authentic Move

When you focus on helping others, the most important lessons you want to learn will emerge. Your helping voice will echo back to help you. Similarly, by allowing yourself to receive help, you give others the opportunity to learn. But it takes courage and authenticity to open yourself up to give and receive help and feedback. It also takes a village whose members you trust.

A Village is Comprised of People Who Embrace Your Authentic Self 

Here are a few questions to ask yourself in order to determine who is in and who is out of your village. 

  1. Does this person extract your energy or fill your tank?
  2. Are they always in need and never give in return? 
  3. Does this person make you laugh?
  4. Do you learn from this person and they from you?
  5. Are you able to have an open conversation with this person without having to “watch” your words?
  6. Are you able to have a candid discussion in a way that your back isn’t against the wall?
  7. How does this person compliment you?

Your answers will guide you to determine if someone has the most important criterion of all for membership in your village: they embrace your authentic self. 

Network and Connect

The keys to developing your village at work are finding a sponsor and/or mentor, building your board of trusted advisors and above all networking and connecting. Strategically align yourself with individuals inside and outside the organization who meet the criteria for village membership. These are people who will tell you what is really going on, people with whom you can comfortably…and authentically…share risky thoughts and ideas that may challenge corporate norms.

Be a Good Villager

In order for the village you have developed to thrive, you must cultivate two essential skills: 

Listening: Listen to every person in your village who talks to you. Listen with intention and vulnerability

Building Trust: Be consistent with your words and behaviors. Be available, even when you may not have time

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