The Power of Intention

Goethe said, “In the works of man as in those of nature, it is the intention which is chiefly worth studying.” Understanding the DISC styles give us the opportunity to look to intention rather than just behavior. Consider a recent interaction that I had with a friend.

I bought new furniture in my bedroom, which necessitated new lighting. I asked my strongly Dominant friend for advice as to what I should do with the lighting. He entered the room, paused for a moment, and with a commanding tone, proclaimed, “Here’s what you’re going to do.”

Years ago, I would have been offended by his blunt declaration. After all, who is he to tell me what to do in my bedroom? Today, after nearly two decades of studying, teaching and applying the DISC styles, I looked to his intention and smiled. I recognized that his intention was to provide advice. And to be fair, that’s exactly what I asked for. I accepted his D style nature and acknowledged his tendency to speak with assertive confidence. I thanked him for his advice, which truth be told, was quite good.

I am not advocating that we tolerate disrespect, poor quality, or a failure to achieve results, but if you look to intention in addition to behavior, you just may find that judgment is replaced with acceptance.

Merrick Rosenberg