Just to be clear, I’m not promoting alcoholism or working under the influence. What I’m suggesting is to consider what would work be like if we all had a little alcohol in our blood throughout the workday.
Allow me to explain. My thought is fully inspired by the fact that alcohol removes some of the mental filters we tend to use daily.
Here are some things I have noticed myself do after drinking one alcoholic beverage:
- I’m more social.
- I’m more relaxed.
- I’m more transparent.
- I can carry a conversation without passing judgment.
- I’m more willing to allow myself to have fun.
- I speak more freely.
What type of workplace would it be if we all did these things more often? I think it would be so much more easier to get stuff done.
A few reflection questions:
- When was the last time you were truly you at work?
- How often do you have an interaction with others (e-mail, phone, or in-person) without a cover your “assets” mentality?
- When was the last time you said “No” without a lame excuse?
- How often do you feel comfortable sharing what’s on your mind about an issue even if it may sound dumb?
- If I could observe your behaviors at work and at home, how similar would they be?
I used to think I was the same at home and at work. I couldn’t be farther away from the truth. I have noticed myself operating differently depending on the people I’m with, the environment, and the type of activity.
Yet, I’m fully aware that my natural personality is a blend of being in a thoughtful state, having deep and personal conversations, and joking around.
In other words, I wake up daily and go to work to not be myself even though I claim to be an honest person.
I know this is a scary ideal for most. I know many think it unrealistic. But what if you try it for a short period of time? What if you went to work with the decision of being yourself and with the desire to be fully transparent and learn from others without judgment?
I don’t know what results you may get. I do know the results I have gotten. And I also know the six behaviors I mentioned earlier are more likely to build relationships, resolve conflicts, and create a high performing culture, than the filtered lives we live today.