It’s what’s inside that counts


A few months ago I suffered an injury and my right elbow developed significant swelling. I eventually took myself to an NHS doctor in London (where it takes weeks to get an appointment) who recommended we drain the swelling, however I would need to make an appointment with another doctor which, of course, was going to take another three to four weeks! Following a painful business trip to the US, I visited a private doctor who said the same thing: I could have my elbow drained but someone else would need to drain it.

No one at this point had suggested an x-ray. I returned to the NHS doctor who recommended an ultrasound before draining. I had the ultrasound and the specialist suspected it was fractured so an x-ray was required. By this point I’d had this injury for almost three months. When I finally had the x-ray, not only was my elbow fractured but a piece of bone had chipped off. Draining may have relieved the symptoms but it would not have found the cause, nor fixed my elbow!

So, what’s the point? Well, when there’s significant swelling there’s got to be something inside that’s not quite right. Rather than just deal with the external symptoms, get an x-ray. Look inside. This is where Heartstyles aligns with life. Do you know anyone living Below The Line? They might be tired, frustrated, anxious or angry because of a situation. When these behaviours manifest, it’s helpful to ask, “What’s happening inside?” Don’t just look at the symptoms; the behaviours.

And it’s worth going deeper. The heart of Heartstyles is to understand what’s driving the behaviour: fear or pride? Take an x-ray of your heart, your heart attitude and your thinking. Go deep in your heart and ask yourself, “What situation, right now, is causing me to react from fear? What are the things I’m fearing that are, in turn, triggering pride?” Truth is, it’s always a bit of both. It’s an ‘and’ when it comes to fear ‘and’ pride.

Have the courage to ask yourself or someone close to you, “What’s really happening for me?”

Once we’re self-aware we’re more able to shift ourselves Above The Line to humility and courage and admit to ourselves things we may have been denying. We can admit we have an injured heart and ask, “What am I going to do with that injury? Do I need surgery? Do I need medication or a new attitude? Do I need to talk to someone, forgive someone or ask for forgiveness?” And, from this Above The Line place, we’re more able to find love, honour, respect and, most of all, healing in our heart.

Stephen’s steps:

Step 1. Examine your heart. Consider the injuries of your heart that cause you to react out of fear and pride.

Step 2. When you action the first step, you immediately go Above The Line to humility and courage and love, honour and respect.

Step 3. Admit to yourself and those around you that you’ve been in this place, that it’s not where you want to be and it’s not who you are as a person; it’s behaviour that you’ve been using. Step up, go Above The Line and be the person you want to be.

Stephen Klemich [CEO, Founder)

HR Summit podcast


Listen to Stephen Klemich talk about how to transform culture in the workplace. Podcast in association with the HR Directors Summit.



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