Hard To Look At

“Warts and all”, is a phrase we use to mean that we accept the failings and the shortcomings of those we love or appreciate, or, perhaps, need.

We don’t typically, however, use this phrase when we talk about ourselves. The “warts” that we know we have (how did warts get such a bad name anyway?) somehow don’t even make it to the front of the stage to get mention when we’re talking our us…or me, or myself.

It’s challenging to look for faults in ourselves. If we knew of them we would have fixed them! Or, would we? Maybe it’s acceptance that takes the place of introspection or deliberation of such faults.

Make time, front of your mind time, to examine the “warts” in your world, to look at the ways you fall short or are lacking.

As we look at our own pains or the holes in our game we may realize that they are either not so bad, or easier to fix than we thought. Either way, it’s liberating in a way to admit to these things, to say, “yes, I could/should/might be better in these ways.”

To Connect or Not

As a raging extrovert, I get sad and tired when I’m alone for too long.

It’s a status that some have a hard time understanding, and I have to work to get it when people say that they are overwhelmed with the act of being social.

There is no right nor wrong here, and working to understand what you need and celebrate that is a key to happiness.

Creating a team of people who share culture, language and a common lens, as well as goals, is easier when you realize that it’s not about the “kind of person” that’s a fit.

The kind of person a good team needs is the kind that commits to the culture, language and goals.

Simple, not easy.

Lessons from Selma

It’s not what you think.

Selma, Alabama has a ton of history. It did before 1965 and those who live there today continue to make their own history.

I spent 15 hours there this August and was impacted tremendously.

Walking the downtown streets on a rainy Saturday evening it felt sadness coming from the earth. Such important things had happened in this small city, and I could feel both the pride and the frustration from the very few locals I encountered.

The biggest lesson was not about Selma, Alabama, the South or any part of it’s history but about me.   My conceptions of what I was like, what that part of our country (as a New Englander it was hard to feel as if I was even in our country) was like, the experiences of others…wow, what a selfish experience I’ve had.

Time to get out more.

Bumpers

Safety nets, guide wires, bumpers, reasons to be fearless without repercussion. 

Is that what’s really good for us?

Do we need to be sure to have a “feel good” practice before a big game? Do you know for sure that’s the best thing for you or your team or do you just think it is? 

What happens if she fails for real? Throws a gutter ball or falls on her face, even literally?  

I think that the toughness comes from getting up and dusting oneself off. 

Allowing failure to occur is not the same as encouraging it. 

Unnatural

It’s not in most of us to first think of others.

Should we actually put others before ourselves?

What if we simply thought of others’ interests in the same way we think of our own…if we valued interests, opinions and perspectives that didn’t mirror ours exactly?

Sounds simple.

This being outside ourselves takes practice. And, a good practice requires willingness to fail, to test limits and clean up edges.

Instead of starting with, “I/we need to be more empathetic,” how about, I’m going to take a deep breath and see if I can consider another’s perspective one time today.

New To You

You see a quote or Google a concept and get some great info…the you realize the resource is from 2 years ago, or five, or twenty five…

Does that make it a bad, old or tired reference?  Maybe. Maybe not.

Good ideas have been around for a long time (and, you probably have some yourself). For sure you can adopt, adapt or customize such concepts others’ ideas to make them work for you.

Consider the content rather than the source. Use your own perspective and situations to decide what might be good for you.

Meanwhile, add to the universe of good ideas and perhaps make someone else’s world better at the same time.