These are two popular questions in the media these days concerning voice activated devices and internet cameras in our homes. The debate centers around our privacy. Trying to protect ourselves against others from seeing or hearing who we really are. Or what we really think.
I find these conversations short sighted and not very timely. For there are so many fundamantal situations that demand us to think about these two questions when there is no technology around us.
How do children learn from their parents? By listening to what they say in conversation. Watching what they do in all situations. If you complain about others in front of your children, what do expect children to do when they meet those people that frustrate you? Do you swear in front of your children? Get drunk when they are present? Angry and short tempered to your life time spouse or mate? Are you calm, generous and forgiving in private conversations in front of them? What behaviors will they internalize as being normal when they become adults?
Where do employees and co-workers learn what behaviors are acceptable? By listening to what you say and watching how you act. Both when you are a leader as well as an active participant in a community. There is a lot of buzz around creating a binding, energetic culture within an organization. While amorphous, it can be a great strength to an organization that is both effective and productive.
We get tested everyday to further define who we are. For our life’s journey changes us as we age. Obstacles challenge us. Life situations test us. What we forget, is what people hear and see us do is how we create our internal stories that define them. Sometimes narrowly, unfortunately, based on one incident or only a few of their words.
Worrying about what we do and say daily should be much more important to us than the privacy that technology tries to steal from us. Being consistent when you are in your home, with how you act and talk to others throughout your day is an ideal that we should all aspire to.
For it simplifies our life. Allowing us to be more confident with who we are regardless of where we are. Safely navigating our days with everyone we come in contact with. Helping them become better by the example we set with our own words and actions.