In the last post I mentioned my presentation ‘If I Knew Then: Life Lessons From a Usata Be’ that I delivered at the Legacy of Excellence Conference. One of the points I mentioned was – It’s Not About Me. Today I am going to expand upon that.
Early in my career I had a hard time not taking the insults and verbal and physical attacks personally. Over time I learned that it was not about me. In fact it had nothing to do with me personally. It had to do partly with the fact I was a cop, and mainly with the other persons own rage, biases, anger and other issues. I just happened to be the one that was there to take away their beer, their spouse or take them to jail.
Over time I also had to learn not to take internal politics personally. It is easy to get caught up in the moaning and groaning and whining and bitching about ‘the department’. “Woe is me. The agency doesn’t care about me.” Of course the agency doesn’t care about me. The agency is just an entity and it is incapable of caring. As Dave Smith says “Love your job but don’t love your agency because it cannot love you back.”
As I became a trainer I had to learn that training was not about me. It is always about the student. As a trainer no one cares how smart you are or how skilled you are. What they care about is whether or not you care enough about them and have the ability to teach them skills that may save their lives. This goes back to one of the key themes of the Excellence in Training philosophy – You have not taught, until they have learned.
So next time you start to takes things personally or start to get too full of yourself remember this – It’s Not About You.