Have you ever known someone who possessed an uncanny ability to say just the right thing at the right time? Or who just seemed to be able to turn a negative situation into a positive one with just an amazing few words?
While that may seem like a special gift possessed only by certain people, in reality we can all grow our capacity to do just that.
“How?” you may ask. It all starts with insight.
Insightful people read situations at a deeper level, tune into others at an emotional level, and pick up on cues others miss.
Insight means to ‘see into’ and that’s exactly what insightful people do; they see a little deeper into themselves and others.
Personal insight means ability to know ourselves, to be aware of our strengths, limitations, our emotional responses, and the impact we have on others. If you have ever had to follow a leader who lacked in self-awareness it seems painfully obvious to the followers.
Relational insight means ability to tune into others, to listen to their stories, empathize, and hear beyond just the spoken words. Organizational insight is the ability to tune into organizational dynamics, relationships between others, and issues or conflicts underneath the surface.
Leading a congregation includes the complex task of reading various dynamics: degree of congregational engagement, spiritual growth, discerning the will of God, understanding the cultural dynamics of those outside as well as inside of the church, understanding personal strengths, areas for personal and congregational growth, hearing God and the people to craft a corporate vision.
Pastoring requires great wisdom!
Wisdom is of utmost importance, therefore get wisdom,
and with all your effort work to acquire understanding.
Proverbs 4:7 ISV
In my work both as a counselor and as a leadership trainer, I believe passionately in helping others develop personal and relational insight as they are keys to relational and emotional power.
Here’s my formula for developing insight:
Personal and Prayerful Reflection + Feedback from Others = Growth in Insight
So, my challenge to you: develop the habit of personal journaling and prayerful reflection; develop the toughness of skin to receive criticism with an open mind and actually seek out feedback from others.
You will see amazing transformations in personal well-being, relationships and leadership effectiveness as you develop new levels of insight.