Increase your own psychological safety

There is a lot of talk at our workplaces about psychological safety nowadays, and for good reason. Psychological safety means that we feel safe enough to ask questions, take decisions, make mistakes and challenge the status quo without fear of repercussions.

We know that psychological safety is the foundation of all well-functioning workplaces and the cornerstone for high-performing teams. Psychological safety gives us room to improvise, innovate, try, fail and learn, all of which are vital skills for any company who hopes to stay competitive.

If we want to credibly and wholeheartedly model and increase psychological safety within our team and at our workplace, we must also create it for ourselves. All change that we hope to accomplish must start within ourselves. If you do not allow yourself to make mistakes it is very difficult to extend that privilege to others. And besides, it’s a very strange idea that there are two sets of rules in this world; one for you and another for everybody else.

Begin like this:

Reflect honestly and with curiousity over the following questions:

  1. Do I permit myself to not know? Do I allow myself to ask for help? How do I feel when I have to concede that I don’t understand or don’t know what to do next?
  2. What are my expectations on myself to always have an answer or be good (the best?) at something right from the start?
  3. What feelings arise within me when I make a mistake? Where in the body do they manifest?
  4. Which thoughts play in my head when I make a wrong decision? Which thoughts are truly true, and which thoughts arise from my own fears or expectations on myself?
  5. What happens in me if i replace “I made a mistake” with “There is something I need to learn from this”?

Curious to learn more about what psychological safety is? Increase your knowledge at the excellent site PsychSafety and being working methodically with psychological safety at your work.