So often in life, we don’t know what we don’t know. Hence, the African proverb of “It takes a village to raise a child”, shortened by Hillary Clinton in her presidential campaign to, “It takes a village”. Each of us has our own perspectives, experiences and opinions, which are always different, at least in part from somebody else’s – which is where the power of a second opinion comes in.
I want to finish my back porch so that I can transform it into my yoga room and practice comfortably there 12 months of the year. I had one contractor come out to give me a bid and he wrote up a proposal. I had a second one come out, and he had a totally different approach, perspective, and philosophy regarding the project. Wow! I learned so much from both of them and what I learned most is that I didn’t know what I didn’t know!
It doesn’t matter if we are talking about brain surgery or home remodels or a business decision, it always serves us to get a second opinion. And if the second just makes us more confused, then maybe a third. Because there isn’t ever just one way to approach something, and we need to figure out the best way to approach it. The best way for us. That is the power of the village in partnerships, collaboration, Master Mind Groups and professional organizations and associations.
I spend so much time trying to be true to myself and make every aspect of my life – both work and play – authentic expressions of me. Yet sometimes in focusing on personally creating my life, I get derailed by not knowing what I don’t know. In trying to live our best lives, we can all get lost sometimes in the having to do it all ourselves. So while I know I can’t finish my porch myself, I may still try to flounder more directly with my bookkeeping or computer issues. My porch experience is a good reminder that we need to be open to all the resources and support available to us and focus on our strengths. When you use your “village” you are more inclined to make more informed decisions – and come to know what you don’t already know.