At first blush, none of us want to know we messed up. It isn't pleasant to see our flaws in living color. But we all have them and they are ever so evident to everyone else. So we may as well take a peek at them and begin to rid ourselves of these flaws.
Pretending our flaws aren't there doesn't hide them one little bit.
Pretending our flaws aren't there doesn't hide them one little bit. Actually, disavowing our part in mistakes makes them worse. It's admitting our mistakes that make them more palatable to others. For a while.
If we admit we are doing something wrong but just keep on doing it, it begins to be an in-your-face problem. "I know I've kept you waiting for an hour but I just don't care," is the message we begin to transmit.
For me, one of my flaws is procrastination. I know it is a flaw, I think about fixing it, and I don't. If it just affects me, so be it. But when it causes others aggravation, it is not okay.
I am writing this column on July 30th for our September issue and I will send it to my friend and editor, Judi Tull, today. Hopefully, she won't faint. She is used to getting it too often during the week of deadline. It isn't fair to her. Period. Judi hasn't complained but I know it inconveniences this efficient and talented woman. When we inconvenience others because of our weakness, it is time to do something about it.
What we do and what we don't do both
speak volumes about who we are.
Our actions - mine, yours - say a lot about us. What we do and what we don't do both speak volumes about who we are. What are we saying about ourselves? What does everyone else already know? Scary, isn't it? It doesn't have to be. We can change.
We don't know what we don't know we might say. So how do we discover what we need to know and change? Listening is a good place to start. Chances are, someone who cares has tried, probably gently, to clue us in. We might ask our dearest friend what one improvement they might suggest we make before our greatest enemy shouts out a laundry list..
If we get terribly angry about something, there's a clue. What we like least in others, we may find in ourselves if we are willing to look. Can't forgive something? Look in the mirror.
Not accepting bad behavior and not being able to forgive it are two very different things. How much easier it is to find fault in others than it is to fix it in ourselves. Let's try that famous "road less traveled." We may please many more people than just ourselves when we do.
Jean Loxley-Barnard has been a writer all her life and studied both sociology and psychology at George Washington University where she earned a B.A. Her company, The Shopper, Inc., encompasses all the Loxley-Barnard family publications - The Shopper Magazines and Doctor to Doctor Magazine. She has been in the advertising, consulting and publishing business for 38 years.
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