Creative Coaching

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Rehearsing different perspectives (in their shoes)

Problems. Whenever we have one and are perhaps feeling a little stuck when it comes to finding a solution, it occurs to me that it’s often because we only look at it through our own eyes. There is of course always another perspective. In fact, there can be several. 

So, what if we want to see something differently? I find a great way to do this is to rehearse stepping into other people’s shoes and see the problem from their perspective. Another way to think about it is to place the problem in the middle of the room and move around it. Ask people you respect for their views on how they see it. People look at problems differently because they have a fundamentally different view on what a problem is and what isn’t.

An example of when this can be particularly effective is when we’re communicating – e.g. delivering a presentation. How does the person (or audience) on the receiving end hear it? Step into their shoes. Remember to make it important for them as well as for you.

Looking at a problem in others’ shoes is a great way to have instant insight on new, potentially overlooked directions. How would your peers see it? How about your team? Or your manager? Work out the differences and similarities on how the different roles would deal with this challenge.    

How you define and formulate a problem determines how you will think and in which way the creative process will go. Changing the perspective keeps you from staring at the issue from just one angle and can enhance your ability to generate imaginative responses.

Do you have any other ways of tackling your problems? Please share your ideas in the box below.

Posted on Thu, February 12, 2015 in Coaching General Personal Development
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