The nose of the mind

I’ve written a lot about instincts and intuition and trusting your gut.

I trust mine and I rely on it often, with people I’ve known forever and those I’ve just met.

Recently my job has taken me out into the public a lot more; I love that.    It can be daunting at times: I never know what I’ll get but that’s the part I enjoy the most ~  I’m prepared for anything and often experience just that.

Yesterday was one of those days.

It was a meeting I had second thoughts about attending.  There was a small part of me that thought “ahh .. it’s the same old message and the same old people and you have many other things to tend to.”  But something told me to go anyways.  And so I did.

Driving through the countryside, past houses, farms and fields, I felt myself relax.   Looking across the crusty wind-shaped snow, I counted the pivots.  The pivots took me back to where I grew up, where massive pivot systems run in circles and water is piped up from rivers and reservoirs across the dusty prairie.

When I arrived at the meeting place, one of the first people I saw was The Grizzly Bear.  I’ve written about men like him before, and I run across many on a regular basis: they’re often older than me, experienced, opinionated. Many like to hear themselves talk and be the voice of authority. Others are gracious and welcoming.  Some – not so much – that’s fine, there’s room for all of us.

Instead of taking my seat I took a chance and approached the Grizzly.  Quietly I asked him about the pivots.  His look told me what I knew he’d assumed all along:  that I was just some city girl out in the country where she doesn’t belong.  I explained that I grew up on a farm and we had pivots, too. Then I inquired as to their water source because I hadn’t seen any large bodies of water around.  These simple questions opened a floodgate of information my way and before the meeting began, the unthinkable happened: he smiled at me.

The meeting started and questions from the crowd soon followed.  I answered and took notes and did my best to manage the information flow.  His posturing was still there and maybe it always will be. But, for once, it was no longer directed at me.

Instinct is the nose of the mind.” -Delphine de Girardin



Have you ever felt a “nudge” about someone or something?  Do you listen to it?

Categories: Confidence at any age, Determination, Faith, fear, Growth, Life, Personal, Quotes, Thoughts, Wisdom, Work | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | 14 Comments

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14 thoughts on “The nose of the mind

  1. Good for you, MJ! As I’ve gotten older (and with Motor Man’s encouragement), I’ve noticed how easy it is to reach out to others now. Of course, mine isn’t business related: it’s usually just in social situations, and sometimes, it backfires. But most of the time, a pleasant conversation ensues!

    • That’s wonderful, Dianna … and like you said, sometimes it doesn’t go as well as you’d hoped but at least you made the effort! 🙂 MJ

  2. At my last company whenever we had changes that affected employees negatively, we always held meetings. They were usually tough situations with no one happy and the comments and questions reflecting that. (doubling benefit costs, salary and vacation changes, etc.) There was always one guy who was particularly annoying. He was smart and had the ability to turn the meeting into a negative one in an inkling. I decided to do a different approach and have a “test group” hear the presentation before it went out to the whole company. I approached his boss and had him included. The reward was twofold. First I got the tough questions I hadn’t thought of prior so I could work those answers in and he felt like he was a part of it all. He would help to explain it to other employees in a positive way. It was a big lesson for me because before that I would avoid him and my gut would grind when I saw him in one of the big meetings.

  3. Don’t want to sound cliche but it’s killing with kindness and getting more flies with honey than vinegar and such that still works in many situations. Glad you had a better meeting.

    • Yes, sometimes that works and sometimes someone is immune to niceness b/c they’ve determined to be cranky. NMP, I just move on 🙂 MJ

  4. Beautifully played. Actually, once I had huge alarms go off in my head in the form of seeing the word “predator” in my minds eye. It was very cool and a bit scary all at the same time. The situation involved a woman who was panhandling for money. Sometimes I give money sometimes not. That day, she came knocking on the car window, to where my husband was sitting. Because the car was off, he couldn’t open it. When I got the message, all I could say was, “no, no, no” over and over, as he was trying the window. The woman read my lips and left. This past fall, the same woman saw me in my car at our local post office. I rolled down the window and heard her long winded lie about needing money. At the end of her sob story (I’ve seen her 3 times now in 2 years around my county) she asked if could giver her a few dollars. She was shocked and mad when I very politely said I’m sorry but no I can’t. Most people give her a few dollars out of guilt.

  5. Good job in heading off a possible problem!! Sometimes all it takes is for the “loudmouth” to understand that he/she is being heard and taken seriously and other times its for them to understand that they don’t need to kill the messenger….but to know that we’re human too.

  6. Nice work, MJ. 🙂 Now I have to go look up pivots!

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