What Intentions Are You Signaling? Part 1

What Intentions Are You Signaling? Part 1

by Linda-Ann Stewart

One day while I was driving, I had to make a turn into the Post Office. I clicked on my turn signal, and checked in my rear view mirror. I wanted to make sure the car behind me saw my signal and was slowing down. I realized what I’d just done was a great metaphor for life. I was signaling my intention to the car behind me, just like we indicate our intentions in life. The car responded to my signal accordingly and I safely made the turn.

However, if I’d signaled with my left turn indicator, and then actually went to the right, it would have confused the car behind me. This could have caused an accident. And that’s sometimes what happens in your life when you don’t follow through on what you’re signaling to yourself and others.

What intentions are you signaling in your life? As a leader, are you micro-managing and not allowing your team to succeed? Or are you changing your mind about what you want and confusing them? If you’re not giving your team clear messages about your objectives and letting them carry out the project, then you’re giving them conflicting information. When you delegate to them, the underlying idea is that you think they’re capable. But when you hover over them, they’ll conclude that you don’t trust them. You won’t get good results by displaying opposing signals.

Are you giving unclear signals in your relationships? Do you stand up for yourself one day, then let people take advantage of you the next? If so, then you’ll never have people treat you with courtesy and respect. They need clear, consistent boundaries to know what they can get away with and what they can’t. Otherwise they’ll act according to the old saying, “Give them an inch and they’ll take a mile.”

Do you want to have a deeper connection with a special someone, but step back when you start to get closer? Eventually, your loved one is going to get tired of no clear direction and will move on to someone who gives them steady and accurate information.

Copyright 2013 Linda Ann Stewart
All Rights Reserved

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