Is your self awareness ability as undeveloped as your parking skill?

Parking has to be one of my pet peeves. I cannot tell you how many times I use or walk by a parking lot and see people do things that are crazy, selfish or just downright rude. My workaffords me the opportunity to talk with others often and the similarity between parking and conversation is pretty strongly correlated for me. You have seen the same things also I suspect. Let me share just a few for your humor, anger or frustration:

Let’ start with parking on the curb. People who do this seem to have little awareness of how they go outside their boundaries. Self awareness can be the same. Some of us have good filters when it comes to knowing what to say and who to say it to. How often have you seen someone “go outside their boundaries” when talking with or offering feedback to someone? I have gotten feedback from others when I have done this and it has been helpful when presented with a future opportunity to put my point in the right spot, just like parking in the middle of a given spot.

Here is another classic example of someone who wants more space than they really need. Who knows the rationale behind this, but I see it all of the time. Some of us have the same issue with self awareness when we choose or dominate an exchange or conversation. Rather than just being a participant and offering our input, we dominate the conversation and keep others from having their say or even getting a word in.

Let’s look at one more example of parking, one of the most frustrating I ever see. Some people don’t realize that they need to stay in their lane, so they get so close that the person next to them cannot even get into their vehicle. This causes a great level of discomfort. Conversations can be like this when someone violates the proper spacing for the discussion. I try to maintain good spacing when I talk with someone, and the spacing is dependent upon the person and the nature of the conversation. I try not to crowd others unless there is a reason, and I have had many circumstances where people have gotten too close for the situation and I either have to continue stepping back or eventually ask them to give me a little more distance. This is a little less common than the first two, but just as frustrating.

Consider how you park when you choose to do so, and also consider how your parking might resemble your conversation style when talking or meeting with others. The worst case scenario is to be towed, and my wife has had to “tow” me away from situations when I sometimes get a little to engaged.

Know your audience when you engage them and “park yourself” in the proper way when you talk with them.

It will help prevent many dings and dents that may cause pain.