“The most exhausting thing in life, I have discovered, is being insincere.”~Anne Morrow Lindbergh
A client asked me for my opinion the other day. As a coach, I try to ask more than tell. I am fully aware that I don’t have all the facts, or a full perspective, of my clients’ situations, and I want to be careful that I don’t direct them when I’m not the expert on what they should do.
That being said, this time I was absolutely willing to weigh in with my thoughts.
You see, my client was caught in a lie. Not a huge lie, and probably not a life altering or reputation-damaging lie, but a lie nonetheless. My client had feigned enthusiasm for his boss’s pet project, and now was in charge of his boss’s pet project. He didn’t believe in the project, nor did he think it could succeed, and now he was in charge.
“What should I do?” my client asked me. “What do I do now?”
I suggested that my client come clean with his boss. That he admit his reluctance for the project, and have a heart-to-heart about his concerns and hesitations. Because we can’t support something we don’t support. It costs us more in the long run, and it is exhausting.
In the long run, it’s better to be honest and sincere. If we disagree, we need to admit that we disagree. If we’re not behind a project, or a decision, we need to let people know. We may have to support it as part of the leadership team, but it will be easier to do that if we’ve already acknowledged our misgivings.
I rarely tell my clients exactly what I think they should do, but this time it seemed the right thing to do. He was exhausting himself with his efforts to manage something that he had concerns about, and being sincere was the best way for him to move forward.
What experience have you had with insincerity?
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