Ok, I'm going to give my age away. I'm recalling Cindy Lopper's song called True Colors after writing this week's article. Too funny! Cindy Lopper was 80s I'm thinking.
This week we are exploring how we can default into judging others when they are being reactive. Here is another perspective to consider.
I’m sure you’ve heard the phrase, “When the going gets tough, that is when a person’s true colors show.”
In fact, when the going gets tough that is when a person’s level of development shows. In fact, their true colors are what is hidden beneath the reactions, the trigger and the defense mechanisms.
Maya Angelo said, “When we know better we do better.”
Yes, even adults can throw tantrums. Our chronology does not guarantee maturity. There is a difference between growing up and waking up, as Ken Wilber puts it.
As I grew up I began to notice that there were many more olders than elders in the world. So, I sought out elders to learn from.
The ancient Toltecs taught that there are three milestones to a person’s development. We come into the world as a “victim” (or dependent on our guardians). We can then individuate and step into our own truth as “warrior”. Then, if we choose to continue to self-develop, we can move into “master”.
Through an integrative lens we can identify a pivot point on this journey of self-discovery.
In order to get out of victim, one must step into their power through their inner warrior.
Once in warrior there are two milestones that bridge to master.
The first is destructive, if we stay there too long. Yet this milestone is needed to grow us out of victim.
The second is constructive, yet if we stay there too long can keep us from moving to master.
The first is victim-warrior.
The second is warrior-master.
In integrative coaching we help people traverse the milestones of self-mastery by taking them from where they identify they are stuck and into the next milestone. We do this by introducing them to the master already within, their true colors.
The true colors within each of us can inform our own self-development. This is what the Course in Miracles means when it says, “You have taught [yourself] what you are, but you have yet to allow what you are to teach you.”
Development is a personal choice. Not everyone wants to develop. It takes work and dedication. Yet, the rewards are where the miraculous resides!
The next time someone flies off the handle, remember, those are not their true colors. They are doing the best they can with the resources and self-awareness they have access to. Remember, within every person is a master awaiting to awaken.
To be amazed by humanity, invite nothing but excellence in others.
By Laurel Elders, PCC
IICT Founder / Senior Faculty