I Want To Know
Lately I have had a thirst for feedback. I have started a new job, published a book, written several posts here, and have made some serious changes in my lifestyle. Oddly enough I have found what seems like awkward reluctance for any criticism. I am asking others for the hard truth as they see it and I am getting rather watery, vague replies. Positive comments have flowed quite freely and I am delighted and excited, but I really want to know what I can do better. I am not saying that I want to be told I am a dolt or a bore, but if that is what people really think, then I really want to know! How can I do anything about it if I just don’t know and if others are afraid to tell me?
Having worked with many different therapists and mentors throughout much of my adult life I often asked for the hard cold truth from them as well. Most refused to say what they thought no matter how much I beseeched them to share. Perhaps there is a sense that I am disingenuous in my search for honesty and really just want to be stroked and petted – but I sincerely want to hear what others perceive about who I am and how they view me. If I’m too loud, please tell me! If I am hurtful, let me know. I am beginning to wonder if people simply don’t look at others as closely as I do all the time. I mean, I think and wonder about all people all the time. I am driven to understand everyone.
In the store, at work, at home, in my dreams I try to understand what motivates others and constantly put myself in their shoes to imagine what makes them behave the way that they do. I am genuinely curious. For most of my life I have also then labeled and critiqued those same people. In all fairness, I think that while I was assessing, I successfully avoided dismissing and harshly judging many of those individuals. I was sizing them up and trying to understand them for the most part. I had such a low opinion of myself for so very long that I gave most people plenty of room to be wrong, or broken, or odd.
There have been times in my life when I was a judgmental, harsh, critic of others and I have surely not escaped prejudice and bias in my thinking, but I have come to a point where I am making a conscious, concerted effort to just allow people to be who they are for the moment and allow them the room to change and grow and prove to me that they have potential to become something positive and good. I think we should all nudge one another toward our amazing potentials. I believe we should point out the areas others can strengthen and develop. As friends and family we should be honest and kind in helping others to change for good. I want that from anyone who might be brave enough to give it to me!
I am not asking you to decide what I need to change about myself. I am asking you to share your perspective. I want to hear others thoughts and opinions so that I may choose to change and grow.
So tell me what you think? What have you read that you agreed with me on and please tell me where you disagree and why.