What Do You Want To Change About You and Why?
“People can’t change. I am who I am.” These are the words my friend uses to defend her position, be it good, bad, or otherwise. How sad if those words were really true. It is one of those stories she tells herself to make herself feel okay about what is unattractive or unhealthy. Changing her stripes is not an option. She has almost sold me on it at times. It would be nice to pretend that I have no control over my judgmental side and just cast my appraisals at a whim. I could maybe enjoy that sense of superiority over the smoker next to me in line, or roll my eyes at the lack of control one has with his children but I continue to fight my inclination to evaluate others because I truly want to be a kinder, gentler person.
I admire compassion but I find I have to really work at it. It is not always easy for me to look at things from someone else’s perspective. It is challenging to get up out of my comfy chair and walk the many steps to see from another’s vantage point. Sometimes I hear myself say that I have earned that right to sit in my chair and judge…”I worked hard for it”. But being smug and superior only feels good until you look at it through another’s eyes and see what it actually looks like on you.
The real difficulty I am having lately is that I am finding that being nice is not as entertaining as being catty and small. I am finding that sometimes being snarky or making fun of other people makes me laugh. I admit it. Being nice and kind and compassionate is hard work. I have been putting in more work hours and my job requires that I be all of those things, nice, kind, compassionate…(customer service after all), and I have found that it is hard work to constantly maintain that. It takes mental effort to be nice when someone else is not and it can be exhausting for me. But when I step away and get quiet, when I am completely alone I know that that effort to be a better person is important to me. I’m not always successful, but the fact that I am aware of it and am trying makes me feel right.
What do you have to work hard at? What motivates you to keep trying?