Today was one of those days that has left me really frustrated with myself. I like to think of myself as a nice person, but sometimes I have days that force me realize that I’m really not the person I want to believe myself to be.
I tend to be too judgmental, too controlling, too critical. I am often unkind, stingy, and impatient. I talk much more than I should, and I so often say things that I later regret (sometimes no sooner than the words are out of my mouth).
I make commitments time and again to listen better, to talk less, to be kinder and more generous and more tolerant. But if there is any change, it so often seems to be at a glacial pace.
The ironic thing is that I am so often tempted into this kind of behavior that I regret out of a desire for approval.
I make fun of someone in order to make someone else laugh and potentially like me more for being funny. I talk because I think I might impress someone with what I have to say. I am unkind because I’m more focused on doing some other task that seems more likely to gain approval from someone important. I manipulate because I think that people won’t like me if I am direct about what I want or need. I tell my story (or give my opinion or share my thoughts) because I want to be seen and acknowledged after years of feeling invisible.
You’d think I’d learn that these strategies backfire on me every time, but I seem to forget that when I’m caught in the moment. Sometimes it feels like “Groundhog Day” as I keep repeating the same mistakes over and over again in only slightly varying ways.
There are times when I just want to give up on my efforts to be a better person when the improvements seem so long in coming, but I know that the cowardly way out. There’s a reason why kindness is one of my words for this year!
“Courage doesn’t always roar, sometimes courage is the quiet voice at the end of the day saying, I will try again tomorrow.” ~Mary Anne Radmacher
So I am choosing to keep at it, and I will try again tomorrow.
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