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The other side of human performance

November 3, 2023

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This podcast is dedicated to people who put on a performance (a show) every day when they come to work. performance means many things, although in the risk and safety world we have become excessively focused on work and the narrative goes something like this that in order for the worker to perform well, she needs the right support from the company. Support in the form of the right processes, right tools, right instructions, right directions and the right rules. And once you do that, not only safety but reliability, quality and efficiency will also improve. Since it is all about performance, the focus still remains on measurements and dashboards, AI and technique.

 

But there is another kind of performance, the kind of performance that we notice with people who are going through so much in their lives (family issues, marital problems, trauma, identity crisis, discrimination, victimisation, bullying, harassment, sexual abuse and so on) and yet they are expected to put on a show when they turn to work. that’s performance, just like Freddie Mercury making sure the show must go on.

 

Do we care to understand performance from this perspective? Is it even important given that this has ‘nothing’ to do with work? Steve Shorrock and I had a heartfelt conversation on this topic and we share our thoughts in this podcast.

 

We hope this podcast will make you think, reflect and approach yourcolleagues and friends with a different perspective about performance.

 

Further information

Poems by Steve Shorrock: https://ptsdays.home.blog/2018/10/29/no-one-ever-died-wishing/

 

Steven Shorrock  00:00

Part of it what I’ve been thinking about lately is just give people a break, give people a break, because so I don’t want to say Be kind to that word. Again, that phrase has been totally hijacked and become almost meaningless. But you’ve got no clue what people go go are going through. And it’s happened to me a few times recently. You know, you don’t receive an email. And so you might respond in a certain way that you’ve not received the email and and the other person says, why not respond in an angry way as if you’ve deliberately ignored them. But what’s more likely, right? Or you’ve, you know, just a small just like small things to do with technique and efficient, right? To bring that back in, where the machine doesn’t work in the way that it should mechanically. Right? Give people a break. Because we’re not machines, and we’re not in a machine. World, we’ve just sort of created the illusion of one.

 

Nippin Anand  01:05

Welcome to another episode of embracing differences with me Nippin on a podcast aimed at engaging with different viewpoints and perspectives about how we as human beings learn, unlearn, recognise, risk, tackle risk, and become culturally sensitive. Talking of which, we have a tweet his workshop coming up in London, from the 21st to 23rd of February, on culture and risk intelligence. If you’re wondering, what is the connection between culture and risk intelligence? My answer is this. How can we recognise risk in our everyday life? By stepping into another culture? How much do we tend to normalise and zoom? As we go about making sense of the world around us? Until we meet someone from another culture? Who sees things completely different to us? In those moments? What do we do? Do we judge them? Do we control them? Do we evaluate their culture, their rituals, habits, language, behaviours, ethics and narratives? From our point of view? Or do we genuinely make an attempt to understand their culture, from their own point of view?

 

Nippin Anand  02:23

That takes confronting our own assumptions and expanding our worldview. And that is what makes us culturally sensitive and risk intelligent. If you want to hear more, you can go on our website, novelist dot solutions slash events. And you will find all the details on the event page including a detailed brochure of what we will cover in this workshop. Empty spaces. What are we living for? abandoned places? I guess we know this goes on and on. Does anybody know what we are looking for? Another hero, another mindless crime behind the curtain in the pantomime hold the line. Does anybody want to take it anymore? The show must go on. The show must go on.

 

Nippin Anand  03:10

That was Freddie Mercury dates back to 1991. Continuing to perform, despite approaching the end of his life. Although his diagnosis with HIV AIDS had not been made public in spite of the ongoing media speculation, claiming that he was seriously very ill. Now this podcast is dedicated to people who put on a performance just like Freddie Mercury each day every day when they come to work. Now, performance can mean many different things. Although in the risk and safety industry, we have become excessively focused on work. And the narrative goes something like this, that in order for the worker to perform well, she needs the right support from the company. Now the metaphor of support is an interesting one, because support basically means the right processes, the right tools, the right instructions, the right directions, and the right rules for compliance. And once you do that, not only safety, but reliability, quality and efficiency will also improve. Since it is all about performance. At the end of the day, the focus still remains on measurements, dashboards, artificial intelligence and technique. But there is another kind of performance, the kind of performance that we noticed with people who are going through so much in their lives. Family Issues, marital problems, trauma, identity, crisis, suicide, or suicidal feeling discrimination, victimisation bullying, harassment, sexual abuse and so on. And yet, they are expected to put on a show when they turn to work. That’s also performance, just like Freddie Mercury, making sure that the show must go on the business must operate, or the continuity of the business can be ensured? Do we care to understand performance from this perspective? Is it even important given that this has nothing to do with work? Steve Shahrokh, and I had a heartfelt conversation on this topic, and be shared our thoughts in this podcast. We hope this podcast will make you think, reflect and approach your colleagues and friends with a different perspective on performance, or rather a balanced view on performance.

 

Nippin Anand  05:39

Steve, So what shall we talk about?

 

Steven Shorrock  05:46

Well, I think a good thing to talk about would be trauma, and work in life. And not just trauma, but the difficulties that people are facing in their personal lives, be it mental illness, trauma related or otherwise, your divergence, relationship issues, and how they still managed to keep going at any level on a work level, and how we can relate to people and work in that sort of context, what kind of assumptions do we make, What expectations do we make? I think that’s a good thing to talk about.

 

Nippin Anand  06:49

And anything in particular, you want to start off with.

 

Steven Shorrock  06:55

So I’ve made it public, you know, through my writing, and through a couple of talks that I’ve been diagnosed with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. Early last year, 2022. So I was actually diagnosed with complex post traumatic stress disorder. And to cut a long story short, what happened was, a few months before that, in 2021, I went to the doctor’s and actually had a problem with my Achilles heel, couldn’t walk properly, it’s very painful. I couldn’t lift it. I thought it stretched, damaged hair, I went to the doctor, and it started to kind of heal. But anyway, I went to the doctor and said, I’ve got a problem with Michael. This is checked out and it hadn’t, like snapped or anything. So it was okay. It was healing. While I was there, I said, there’s another issue. I forget what it was. But I usually go to the doctors with things and threes. I think a lot of people do that, save them up, you know. And so I talked about this other issue or whatever it was, I think I’d had some blood tests, and I’ll just need to get the results. And then as I was about to walk out. I just said the letters PTSD. So as I say that now, every time I say that, it’s really difficult to say those letters. Because the same thing happens is what happened in that doctor surgery that I just there’s a block, kind of in my chest and throat, I can’t speak anymore. So I just take a deep breath before I say that actually, just like it did take a deep breath. And then anyway, it can kind of come out. So on that day, then I said it and I was crying. And I noticed sort of frozen, really. The doctor was brilliant. She was just exemplary. She was excellent. She just gave me time, just face. As I said, because I don’t need it. You said I know you’re busy. And I said okay, go on. It was like because I’ve only got five minutes with doctors now that’s whatever. And she created space and time and said what’s happened? And I said, Well, what’s not happened? I went through so many things, but they were all things that happen between the ages of like mid teens up to about 26 help about a 12 year period. They weren’t recent really. And so he actually prescribing antidepressants, but I wasn’t really keen on that. I tried them before in the past and they didn’t agree with me. I just didn’t like you know, so anyway, I did start to take them by I was pretty much asleep for days until I stopped and I just thought I don’t want this. And I didn’t feel that necessarily. I was depressed. It doesn’t feel quite, quite quite right. But anyway, she referred me and I got assessed. Some months later, I think it was February 2022. And I was I was diagnosed with complex PTSD, which I knew I had PTSD. I didn’t know I had Complex PTSD, I’d never heard about didn’t know what it was. And when I read more about it, I certainly didn’t want that. It was not the diagnosis that I wanted. So, yeah, I discovered that not only had I had chronic multiple PTSD s, throughout my teens, and 20s, multiple traumas, involving violence, death, loss, accident, a very bad car accident. But I still had it, they’d all built on top of each other, like a layer cake, starting in my childhood, you know, going on through my teens with multiple events, and then carried through my nervous system. And here, I was now as like, what 47 year old guy now with complex PTSD, about things that happen in my teens and 20s. And what this has made me think about is how we’ve got no idea what’s going on, in the background of the people that we meet, how much we expect of them. From my teens to late 20s, I was pretty high performing that university that PhD master degrees, all that kind of stuff. Quite now reasonably high performance, you know about work. And yeah, in the background, is all of this stuff. And so what I’m quite curious about is people who have so much stuff in the background, whether they’re neurodivergent, which you know, now I’m, I have this sort of acquired neuro divergence, which has features of autism, it has features of ADHD, but ultimately, it’s complex PTSD. You know, and I’ve got a daughter with autism, who’s autistic, and I’ve got a daughter with ADHD. And I’ve learned quite a bit about those as well. I’ve got lots of autism in my family, and ADHD in my family. What I often think about now is how much we expect of people, and how we judge people for small things, you might forget something at work, you might not reply to an email, you might not have everything organised perfectly. In other words, you’re not performing like a machine like we sometimes expect people to. And yet, there’s so much trauma, mental illness, and neuro divergence that creates invisible disabilities and people that we judge them for, even though we don’t know what they have done. And so we expect people to perform like machines. You know, we’ve taught you we’ve talked about technique and efficiency, so we expect people to perform like this without knowing all of this stuff that can be going on in the background.

 

Nippin Anand  13:36

Don’t think? Yes, yes, absolutely. And then, and my question is, is, you know, you, you talked about this idea of, we expect, and you’ve said this a few times already, we expect people to, to perform in a particular way. And the question really, is that, where does that expectation actually come from? Now, how do we come to expect all this? Clearly, this is, you know, we are we are caught up in a paradigm or in a worldview, where all this is considered. Okay. And that’s why we do it. Right. So what is the source of all these expectations? In your view?

 

Steven Shorrock  14:17

Yeah, it’s a good question. But our lives have become revolved around work. I think our meaning is derived from work. You know, I learned that lesson very early on, because I grew up in a family business. And that’s about survival. Because if the business doesn’t fight, survive, you know, you’re, you’re in big trouble. You’ve got the all of the staff as well as your employees. So we had a number of small shops and a little distribution business. It was a very high stress, but bringing constant stress and the main thing that I learned was you have to work our butt all the time. And that’s your value. In that context, what it meant was physical work, because intellectual work was not prized at all. I was in a working class family, no one ever went to university in my family history, I was the first. So you just have to physically show how you could work like a machine, the more you could work, the better person you were. So that’s where it kind of came from. And you we see this in society. Now. It’s just produce, produce, produce. And consume, consume, consume. There’s no space for much else. Rest.

 

Nippin Anand  15:49

Yeah, it’s interesting, you should say that, because this morning, I had a, I did a podcast with Rob, in Australia, and we discuss this whole idea of technique and efficiency in in great length. And also podcasts will be released in time. But you know, what, what intrigues me from what you have been consistently saying, from the start, is that the technique has become, you know, has has been there since the start of the mankind, but in a way, it’s become an ideology, and a religion. It’s become an ideology that we are live by now that nobody questions, technique and efficiency anymore. It’s, it’s a force on its own, it’s an archetype on its own, you know, you use the word archetype, so many times in your work. And once it gathers the energy of an archetype, it also creates a mythology that comes with it, that this is considered efficient. And this is not considered efficient, although we know that, you know, sitting on our on a social media platform all day, just boosting our egos, or looking for likes and shares is probably not the most efficient way of life. But such as the power of technique that it decides what is right and what is wrong. So it’s quite okay to do that, within the mythology of technique. And I find that very powerful actually, or investing in weapons of mass destruction. Doesn’t sound like an efficient thing to do. But it’s all within the discourse of technique. You know, there are some internal contradictions here. But, you know, even Heidegger spoke about it spoke about it, but I find it so powerful when you say that we expect people to perform performing, performing, in fact, you know, this whole idea of performance is a very interesting one. Because in one way, you have to put on a show. Yeah, that doesn’t matter what you’re going to the show must go on, I can’t remember that that song from one of the very famous singers, who was diagnosed with cancer on the day, and he was he, you know, he knew that he had very limited time. And he had to sing this song song, which was the show must go on, I don’t know the name of the singer, but such a powerful video to watch the now you have to put up with this idea of technique. And you have to must, and you must perform. The other thing I find interesting, then the same discourse of technique is, which is you know, it doesn’t matter what what you’re going through, look at the framing of the questions in the Risk and Safety world. What makes work difficult? And to your point that, how much of our what a worldview that is so stuck, so anchored on this concept of work? And if the other person turns around and says, a bully manager, or sexual harassment by my supervisor, we have no words. Absolutely none. So we are we are caught up in this paradigm where we have to put up a show we have to put on a show, regardless of what is going on in our lives. You know, there’s a English expression, which is how’re you doing today? And the answer is not too bad. And what does that even mean? In Hindi, a greeting is Namaste. And the other person says namaste, which means that, you know, the garden may respects the God in you. So there’s some meaning to that greeting, right? But what is created, you know, it’s like, complete disregard to your personhood, regardless of what you’re going through in life. I’m not interested. My greeting itself is so superficial to you. Is I don’t know what you have to say about this.

 

Steven Shorrock  19:51

Yeah, last year, and this this year, lost some people in my life so there were two people who were like We’re like grandparents. The biological relation wasn’t the the woman was my second cousin, we call her auntie, my dad’s cousin. But the age difference and so on the left around the corner, it was through like grandparents, the relationship was a grandparent and I was around they’re very often not leave. And they died. You know, and this is in the 90s. And they died within a few weeks of each other. They were in love until the end. They were absolutely love story from being 17. They died. And then Richard Cook, who was a friend of mine, and anesthesiologist and safety scientists, he died. And this just made me think about what will we regret when we die? When I was diagnosed with PTSD, in fact, before I was diagnosed with PTSD, it was before I knew I had PTSD, I hadn’t been diagnosed with C, PTSD, but I knew my PTSD. And I’d never written poem poetry before I had no interest in poetry. My relationship with art without was completely blocked my PTSD because I grew up in artists Nippin, I was not in engineering or science, I had no interest whatsoever in that not, I was interested in art, craft, writing, and listening to people I thought I was interested in. And then the humanities, that’s what I was interested in, as a child. And I used to paint and draw and I was a good artist. And I use pastels and so on, and my capacity for that was was was completely blocked by PTSD. But anyway, before I was diagnosed, I knew I had PTSD. And I started to write poetry. furiously, right? I mean, furiously as and I wrote an unbelievable amount of poetry. never written a poem, or poems, or all of this poetry. And I published some online on a little blog called PTSD is on WordPress about all of the experiences different experiences I’ve had involving violence and loss and accidents and all sorts of stuff, you know. And one of them was called, no one ever dies wishing right? No one ever dies wishing I don’t know if I have a show to this

 

Nippin Anand  22:37

would you like to share?

 

Steven Shorrock  22:39

Yeah, I’ll just find it just just now. Because it should be easy enough to to find the the blog site, where you can find these poems is called PTS days dot home dot blog. So PTSD a ye s dot home.

 

Nippin Anand  23:04

I will include Doctor

 

Steven Shorrock  23:07

dot blog. So these it’s strange for me to look at these poems now, because I couldn’t write them now. Right now? I don’t think so. I brought all of these within about four weeks, few weeks anyway. I don’t know it was within a short time, you know, there were about all kinds of stuff that happened but one of them was called no one ever dies wishing I’m not a poet. You know, I don’t have any training, or anything in writing poetry. I just wrote all of this stuff. And then I stopped writing. It was called no one ever died wishing when it goes. No one ever died wishing they’d stayed longer at the office, tapping at keys and staring at screens some trickling away into corporate machines. No one ever died wishing they’d fitted in more shopping malls and sites serving corporate greed wants suffocating basic needs. No one ever died wishing they’d spent more time on devices, tapping and zooming and clicking and scrolling. Addicted distracted, weary eyes rolling. No one ever died wishing they’d watch more television during themselves and horror show news sings neighbours on met strangers on widescreen.

 

Steven Shorrock  24:35

People die wishing they’d stayed in touch with their friends or phone call the visit sometimes, then together knowing that you and they won’t live forever. People die wishing they’d expressed how they felt. I’m sorry. I’m angry. I’m hurting. I love you. It opened the door for feelings to pass through. People die wishing they’d taken risks made decisions, travel change, job, conquered their fears, not staying in a rock with them. And yes, people die wishing they’d live true to themselves with authenticity, and meaning sensation and feeling. That was 2008. And I knew at that point, you know, that I had PTSD, but no one else did. Now, all anybody saw was this, you know, fairly high performing guy, right? Who produced good stuff, and was able to be a very good father very productive, you know, effective.

 

Steven Shorrock  25:59

They couldn’t see all of this stuff that I, that I put into, into, into into poems. So that just brings me back to this original point about you know, when you send an email to someone, and they’ll reply straight away, or they’ve not replied to your texts, or they don’t seem as organised or they’ve missed the detail on something, you’ve no clue, you’ve really got no idea what is going on in their life, whether they have, you know, like, whatever issues, relational issues, whether there’s got some kind of mental illness, or trauma, or neurodivergent, that makes something like answering an email, very, very difficult, you know, or planning your day, very, very difficult. So that’s one side of it. But beside it, is, you know, what, I learned it like, this happened more recently, you know, younger people, I know, die people in their 30s 40s. You know, my mother was 45, when she’s younger than the the time and energy that we put into technique, as you say, you know, coming to understand what you mean about that. It’s like, it’s not what you’re going to regret. What are you going to regret? Because it could be tomorrow, right? Could be tomorrow? What are you going to regret, and work on that stuff. And even that word work on that stuff, you can see how it’s just taken over the whole way that we think we have to work on stuff. You know, we won’t regret kind of, oh, I should have just stayed in the office a bit more, we should have just produced more. That’s not the stuff. So how do we create the space? To look at all of this thing?

 

Nippin Anand  28:32

Do you want to see more?

 

Steven Shorrock  28:35

No, that’s my question. You know, how do we create space for the stuff that really matters? You’ve got so many days off from your work, even that light days off? What have you got? If you’re an American, you might have five or 10 days off if you’re not it’s crazy. You know, I had a job in Australia and academic 20 days off now. I have a little bit more

 

Steven Shorrock  29:13

Yeah, I don’t know. Yeah.

 

Nippin Anand  29:15

Just just just on that, Steve, just one small comment to say, predict Taylor, the so called Father of scientific management, actually had a stopwatch in his hand at the time when he was dying. I mean, what are you counting? And there is nothing left in life anything. That is the problem of technique and efficiency. That it comes to dominate you in ways that you don’t even know that there is another world that exists and you know, Steve, I find it so so helpful to just go on an evening work and Sit in the graveyard for 1520 minutes and just watch people as they come to lay flowers, put water on this watch their loved ones resting in peace. I think there is a realisation with some people at least. This is like, this is what it is. And that’s what I shared with you yesterday. I was sitting there.

 

Steven Shorrock  30:28

Yeah, yeah. My, I wrote a post about this, but when my favourite places is, is a graveyard, it’s overgrown, it’s a post called on living and dying, there are two parts to it. And one has pictures of this graveyard, you know, all completely overgrown, and it is a great reminder, you know, looking on the graves at what’s written, and so on. But, you know, like, sometimes I’ll find myself on a walk and but you’re thinking of the time along, I’ve got so much and I’ll be doing something else. So we’ve got those priorities all mixed up.

 

Nippin Anand  31:08

That good often strikes me when I’m sitting there, why am I sitting idle? And this is what Rob said in the morning when I was talking to him. He said, there are this indigenous people who would sit and sit and sit for three hours and have conversations. And for them, that’s not a waste of time. That’s a way of life. That’s how life should be lived. And, yeah, so true. Yes.

 

Steven Shorrock  31:39

Even this idea of wasting time. Yeah. What does that what does that mean? Because what it, it puts a value that we don’t question. But that’s the one that I grew up with, produce, produce, Do do do, there wasn’t there’s no space for being just doing. And I think many of us do this, at least through school, if you’re not convinced at home, you’re you’re really taught this school, you know that your worth is what you can produce and perform. Right, and you get marked for it, you get marked out or 10 or 20, or ABCD, or whatever. And so it’s very clear. There’s no space for relating. There’s no space for your gifts to be revealed. And given because your gifts and really not relevant, my gifts when I was young. As I said, we’re drawing and painting, writing, listening to people, I was a kid and I used to find out adults to talk to and listen to, you know a lot about their lives and so on. Now I do that with taxi drivers, that’s my best conversations. But there’s no space for that in. It’s not valued. But

 

Nippin Anand  33:05

what you see, this is the thing that when you start to look at something like technique or efficiency, as as an archetype, as a worldview, as a way of seeing the world, as a way of living and being in the world, I think what you tend to liberate yourself from is you know, like, for example, the Tahiti, Ian’s did not have a concept of grief, until 1950s. So, so anyone would die in the community, and they would feel very, very sick, very, very sick, until an anthropologist went there, to see what was going on. And he called it grief. And he made them understand that this is grief. So now they have a word for it. And in the same way that you know, now that you have, you have a finger on it, that this is what it is, whether you call it PTSD or technique, you have a way to liberate yourself from it, because you can see there are times when you can watch it from the outside and see what’s going on. And I think that is the remarkable you don’t have a solution. You know, these are these are these problems have no solutions. But at least you can be in the moment you can be more mindful about what’s going on here. And I think that acknowledgement that prophecy, you know, prophecy is a very religious word, but that’s not what it means. It basically means It means telling or being able to give something a name naming, naming his prophecy, actually, yes. And I think that ability to to name something is very liberating. very liberating in my view.

 

Steven Shorrock  34:46

Yeah, absolutely. It is. But I think it often takes some kind of trauma or traumatic awakening to to reach that point.

 

Nippin Anand  34:59

So Because the starting point is denial and anger, right? We will come to name something. That cycle, some people are just stuck in that denial and anger forever. But once you start to recognise it and name it, and there are people around you to help you come out of that cycle. I think that’s another discussion, of course, but I think that is that is a very healing process, very healing process. Knowing that, you know, that there have been people who have been through it before me and there will be people who face it in the future is, is also is also very healing, right. Very, very, there’s a sense of relief, as well,

 

Steven Shorrock  35:44

that there is I mean, like, coming back to the PTSD thing, I spoke openly about it, two conferences, one aviation, related on critical incident stress management, and another was a healthcare conference. But the healthcare conference in particular was quite a big conference, and I had many people come up to me afterwards. I didn’t find giving the talk too difficult. There are some bouts that are hard, because I can’t get the words out easily. But I didn’t find the top too difficult. Afterwards, that was quite difficult, because people come up to me, paramedics, psychiatrists, partners of psychiatrists, critical care nurses, others say, that’s what I have. I didn’t talk about the complex part of PTSD very much. I talked about playing PTSD, which I’ve experienced multiple times and built on each other. But there’s so much of it. And they basically said that never really spoke to 20 mom about it. And there’s my partner has this and never spoke to him. And it’s there in the background is listen, you’re like a virus, you know, that’s what it is. It’s like a virus that attaches itself. It’s just, it’s a burden. And, yeah, we just don’t talk, we don’t talk about it. It’s like, I also have sort of scoliosis, a little bit about that issues. It’s okay to talk about that. I mean, that’s fine. You get a frozen shoulder, you could have knee pain, doesn’t matter. Whatever it is, you can talk about anything that’s physical. Funnily enough, once I started to address PTSD, my back problems started to leave as well. My hips which were twisted, and my shoulders, which were very uneven, about one to two inches, I felt became straight. My hips started to level out amazing. Now, once you start to work on these kinds of things that we hold in the body,

 

Nippin Anand  37:44

it’s an embodied mind. It’s an embodied embodied, isn’t it?

 

Steven Shorrock  37:47

Yeah. It lives in the body. It is. Absolutely.

 

Nippin Anand  37:56

What a wonderful conversation.

 

Steven Shorrock  38:00

Yeah, yeah, it’s pretty healing.

 

Nippin Anand  38:01

To me, at least, I mean, seeing that, there are so many commonalities between your experience and what? Yeah.

 

Steven Shorrock  38:16

There’s more awareness of trauma. Now. That comes with the downside, you have the whole of this trauma informed everything, again, turned over to technique, you might say everything’s now trauma informed people don’t necessarily understand trauma at all. I’m actually not sure I’m not. I’m not quite sure how you can really understand trauma unless you’ve faced it. You know, because how do you know trauma to me is a wound. That’s the best way it’s an internal wound, it’s never healed. It’s a work. And it’s like, quite hard to know what a wound feels like.

 

Nippin Anand  38:46

Yeah, and I find Gabor Mate, particularly helpful here, because he talks about two kinds of traumas. One is the trauma with a big T, which comes in the form of what you’ve experienced, by example, is often, which is very severe. But there is the trauma with a small t, which we all go through each day, every day as someone shouts at us, judges condensers, you know, or even instructs or tells us something in ways that we don’t like. So that is also a form of trauma. Because anything that holds you back in the past and doesn’t let you do the sense making and doesn’t lead you to understand the world around you is trauma is because it’s stopping you to think. Yes. So

 

Steven Shorrock  39:37

this this one when it occurs in childhood, repeatedly, it’s an emotional death by 1000 cuts. People experience that with CTS to see PTSD, whether it’s neglect or abuse. And it is a sort of emotional death. It’s an IT IS If this kind of it could be things that individually, the events are actually not considered big T traumas. But you inherit a view of the world that is dangerous and unpredictable, and untrustworthy, and so on. And then later in life, those small t traumas produce can produce a disproportionate effect, because you’re now back without realising in an alternative, like hourglass just got stuck. You know, you’re not in the hourglass in the middle anymore, where the sand is low, and you’re in another one where it just stopped. Yeah. Yeah. Again, like, being mindful to that in day to day life, that if you shout at someone or insult them, you have no, you have no idea about what the effects of that could be. It could seem like a small thing, you know, for the person, it could be a huge thing. It could we talk about triggers, again, a word that’s been totally hijacked to mean offence, it’s nothing to do with offence, it means it’s taking you back to that original trauma. That’s what triggered means. You know, so like, for me, hearing a motorbike, certain type of motorbike makes me cry. Automatically. Hearing an ambulance makes me very scared and furious. You know?

 

Nippin Anand  41:52

We are there are certain memories in life, which I hope I never see the cues off again in my life. It just pulls you back straight into that is. Steve, if we were to put an end to this conversation, what is it that you would like to say in ending? I don’t like the word conclusion. But what would you like to say as we end this,

 

Steven Shorrock  42:19

it’s part of it what I’ve been thinking about lately is just give people a break. Give people a break. Because so I don’t want to say Be kind to that word. Again, that phrase has been totally hijacked and become almost meaningless. But you’ve, you’ve got no clue what people go go going through. And it’s happened to me a few times recently. You know, you don’t receive an email. And so you might respond in a certain way that you’ve not received the email. And and the other person says, why not respond in an angry way as if you’ve deliberately ignored them. But what’s more likely, right. Or you’ve, you know, just a small, just like small things to do with technique and efficient, right? To bring that back in, where the machine doesn’t work in the way that it should mechanically, I give people a break, because we’re not machines, and we’re not in a machine. World, we’ve just sort of created the illusion of one. You know, so just be gentle with people and assume that assume goodwill assume, that people are trying to do the best in sometimes formidable circumstances, you know, is that it’s a wonder they’re doing that it’s amazing, they’re doing even half of the job that they’re doing. Amazing.

 

Nippin Anand  43:46

But you know, Steve, my, my main concern is that unless you have a way of life, unless you have a way of life that acknowledges the other person that sees in the other person, a human person. No matter how hard we try, people will default to, to treating another person as, as, as a machine. You have to come from a position of seeing another person as a complete human person, with their unique personhood, with their unique challenges with the unique problems with the unique bag that they carry the histories, their motivation, their dreams, that, you know, it’s and quite often, we don’t do that we don’t even have the intelligence to step into another person’s shoes and see life from their perspective. It’s, it’s almost impossible for many people in positions of power and authority, and particularly those people who need to do it even more. And so I think this whole idea that the jargon that comes with leadership around humility and authenticity and, and an authenticity and curiosity if you like to understand the other person becomes so hollow if you don’t have an ethic of personhood and this is why your work that you draw from Carl Rogers, which is very humanistic. Yes. And I think that is what we need to do more than ever.

 

Steven Shorrock  45:25

Yeah. Yeah, absolutely humanistic psychology really was drowned out by cognitive psychology which mechanised people that reduces again, technique, and then that and then your psychology and so on and it’s like you really lost the essence of what it is to be a person. When our brains with hands.

 

Nippin Anand  45:51

That’s right. It’s a good place to end. Thanks, Nippin. What do you think? Think about it in this way. Can they ever be a divide between a worker and a person? A worker and a person can be really ignored of a fatherhood, motherhood, our feelings as sons, sisters, brothers and friends in us when we get to work in the morning. calling somebody a worker and thinking of them as workers misses out the point that every person is unique. Everyone has a history, background motivations, dreams and aspirations. Of course we all need a standards, some set of standards to follow and respect. But a complete disregard to each person’s uniqueness is the path to dehumanisation. So think carefully when you use the word human performance. What really are we talking about, and doing and calling it human? The next time you feel the temptation to respond to a colleague colleague, who has been rude to you at work, think about it again. The next time you see someone at the edge of their feelings, pretending that everything is okay. When you and her both No, that does not seem to be okay. Is there a way to find out what is going on behind the scenes in this person’s life? Could this also be a person who’s putting on a performance show? Would you care to make an attempt to understand the person behind the scene? We cannot improve anything, let alone performance unless we understand the difference between a human and a person. There are so many like Freddie Mercury, put on this mask each day. Because no matter what the show must go. This podcast has made you think, reflect reflect we have achieved a purpose.