In the worlds of work and sport is there a bigger cliché? Often said in jest, I would also suggest that it is often used with an ingenious intent and influences perceptions of person centred team culture. Fit in or F…..!
At a time when people are looking for purpose and meaning in their lives, getting to know oneself is more important than ever. I would argue that we need to recognise the ‘I’ as essential in a truly person centred culture.
We often hear the term ‘personhood’ being used in the context of person centred care. But what does it really mean in relation to the much maligned ‘I’?
I was struck by this quote:
Personhood is the quality or condition of being an individual person. At the core of personhood is the self- who we are, our values and beliefs. It’s who makes us who we are.Pam Brandon*
Personhood and self-awareness gives us a sense of purpose and meaning, but for me it comes from a deliberate choice to be vulnerable. Being able to trust others takes a willingness to be vulnerable. Where lack of trust exists, vulnerability is seen as a weakness and the team suffers as a result.
Creating trust takes a willingness to value the personhood of yourself and of others.
This willingness to be vulnerable, to be authentic will demonstrate what is expected. It will create a culture within a team where it is okay to be yourself and accept others just for who they are.
Over time, you and your colleagues will not feel vulnerable, your simply being yourselves. This is the beginning of person centred teams. Through the reality of embracing the vulnerability of life you’re creating a culture for your team to operate as the best version of themselves.
This is true person centred leadership creating team culture where personhood is about meaningful relationships and achieving a culture of person centred approach as Kitwood. (1995) intended.
‘Being able to recognize the “self” of personhood is key to understanding and practicing person-centred care’.
Take a risk, be yourself and trust that others will want this too.
*Pam Brandon is President/Founder of AGE-u-cate Training Institute. Quote from Personhood and its value in dementia care. October 2018