How can you “hold the vision” for others?


Do you have a friend who doesn’t see their potential—even their greatness?

Do you know someone who is going through a hard time—maybe they’re out of work or going through a hard time in their marriage—and they are unable to remember who they are and all of their good qualities?

Perhaps you can be the person to “hold the vision” for them until they can see that for themselves.

This is, I believe, one of the most important gifts of a true friend and one of the most important responsibilities of friendship.

I was reminded of the gift it is to have a friend who can do that the other day when I was sharing with my friend Fran Liautaud about a challenging conversation I was not looking forward to having.

I was telling her how I was going back and forth about whether I should have the conversation or treat it as a “Why bother…it’s not worth it…just let it go…” situation.

Fran said “It’s funny that we’re talking about this because just this week I was talking with a friend who was in a similar situation and she had pretty much decided not to talk with her friend about what bothered her. But I told her ‘You know what David Lee would do…he would talk with them about it.’”

She said how her friend wanted to hear more and she shared with her my philosophy about if we do the hard work of talking things out—even when its excruciatingly uncomfortable—not only do we benefit, but we help make the world a better place by modeling healthy communication. When we model for others that you CAN talk about difficult issues in a respectful way and it can have a happy ending, they’re more likely to talk things out…rather than keep it in and hold a resentment or break off a friendship.

She then said how that inspired her friend to consider it WAS possible to have that conversation.

I loved it. Fran’s telling me how she told someone else about what I believe and do and how that inspired that person inspired ME to rise to the challenge. She reminded me of who I am when I was forgetting.

She “held the vision” for me of who I am—and want to be—when I wasn’t able to. That simple act turned the tide.

How can you be that person for the people in your life?

How You Can Put This Into Action

  1. Who do you know that you hold in high regard who might be going through a hard time and might need reminding of their potential, their strengths, and what makes them uniquely appealing as a person? How about letting them know what you see in them?
  2. Do you supervise people at work? How about taking a moment with each person and sharing with them what talents you see them possessing and the potential you see in them.
  3. What about your mate? What makes them awesome in your eyes? Might you remind them what you see in them?


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