I’ve not met anyone who does not think themselves self-aware. I’ve also yet to meet anyone who has completely eradicated their blind spots. They are called blind spots for a reason…they are impossible for us to see on our own. It takes having folks around you whom you trust to help bring those blind spots into your line of vision. And, it takes being in a place where you are able to take in this feedback. Let me share a recent example.

For the past few months, I have been putting the finishing touches on an online course that is launching soon. It has taken me to the very edges of my learning zone. Not just in having to learn the nuances of the application’s platform, though that was certainly challenging! But, also, as someone who has done the preponderance of my training “live,” it took a good deal of effort to work to ensure that each lesson would provide the tools, resources, and frameworks to support the learning…particularly, when I wouldn’t be able to see, real-time, where the participant might be getting stuck or need some additional guidance.

All of that, though, sat squarely in my learning zone. It wasn’t easy but I knew I could figure it out. As I moved from finalizing the content to marketing the program, I felt my energy change. Each day, I was checking how many folks had registered. Each day, I was trying to figure out what more I should do to create interest. It wasn’t until one of my lamp lighters, from the other side of the world, sent me the following visual that it became blindingly obvious that I had shifted from the learning zone to the anxiety zone.

Once I recognized this, I could begin to examine what it was that was driving my anxiety. In this instance, it was my own expectations that were causing the anxiety. Data suggests that for the launch of a new program, a cohort of 4–6 is typical. I, however, had set my sights much higher than this. Why? Because I know the impact this program can have and because I’m committed to getting it out into the world. But, as another lamp lighter reminded me, that is not the purpose of this launch. The purpose of this launch is to learn from the experience of the participants. What resonated for them? What was most helpful? Where could I make the course even stronger?

Just as I was wrapping my head and heart around this, I received another message from my Aussie Lamp Lighter which said, in part,

Is anxiety about outcomes and unrealistic self-expectations hiding the best Lisa…the amazing, articulate, insightful, caring, engaging Lisa?? As a participant in a program titled “ From SORE to SOAR” I would expect my facilitator to tell her story about making that journey, including the fact that soaring can never be a final destination, just a point of high performance occasionally reached by being your best self and showing that to the world without fear…this is who I am…top that!!!
My tough question to you Lisa is….. “What is the experience people will have of you?”

This is the power of having lamp lighters — people who are fully invested in your vision of your success. I knew that something was off for me, but I couldn’t see what it was; couldn’t articulate it. They were able to hold up a mirror for me and show me the disparity between my vision and how I was behaving.

Who helps you to see your blind spots?