I keep a picture of my grandma on my desk that helps to remind me of the person I want to be every day. My Grandma Davis was truly a beautiful, patient soul. I am not exaggerating when I say no one in my family can remember her ever saying anything negative about another person.
But most of us are not as angelic as my dear departed grandmother. Do you ever find yourself easily pointing out someone else’s faults or flaws? Like, have you ever said things about others that are judgments like, “He’s a narcissist” or “She’s so critical” or “He doesn’t listen” or “She’s such a control freak” or “He has his priorities out of order”.
But there is something about that behavior I’ve always instinctively known (but am not proud to admit, any more than I am comfortable admitting that I have had the judgments in the first place)…It takes one to know one.
The obvious truth is that I judge someone else’s specific behavior partially because I’m intimately familiar with that conduct in myself. I see it in others because I recognize it in me. And in judging others (accurately or inaccurately), I can forget to remain focused on the one person whose behavior I can actually affect…myself.
Over the last few weeks I’ve allowed certain frustrations to take over my ego and psyche. I’ve found myself focused on everyone but Paige. And as I look back on my complaints and fears and judgments, I’m painfully aware that I am guilty of many, if not all, of the specific things I was putting on others.
I actually did a mental shakedown and repeated a little mantra in the mirror, “Stop worrying about everyone else. Stop expending your energy on things that aren’t your business. You do you, Boo. You do you.”
It’s helped some. Of course, now I’m reeling from the new judgments I’ve bestowed upon myself for having any of the “wrong” feelings in the first place. I’ll beat myself up for that for a long time. But it is what it is. I wish I were more like my Grandma Davis. I will continue to strive toward that. But in my praise of her I also know that what made her so amazing was she was so rare. Here’s to her. And here’s to all of us who want to be more kind, more tolerant and more loving to others and to ourselves.
Time to read The Four Agreements again.
- Be impeccable with your word.
- Don’t take anything personally.
- Never make assumptions.
- Always do your best.