Monday, November 01, 2004

learning curve

These are the things I have learned from watching the people I love:
To stand up for myself.
To speak my truth.
To not say that I know something unless I have done the research to prove it.
To be able to admit it when I am wrong.
To not be afraid to be myself.
To talk about the things I feel and the problems I have, so that I can figure things out.

These are the things that the people I love have actually told me:
Don't stand up for yourself if it means losing your job.
Don't speak your truth if it's going to offend someone.
You will always be just a child, so no matter how much research you do and no matter how well you know your subject, you will still always be wrong.
Love means never having to admit you're wrong.
You should not be afraid to be yourself as long as that version of your self is publicly acceptable, which it isn't, so you should try to change.
You talk too much, too fast and you are too emotional/sensitive.

I believe that if you truly love someone, you love them for everything that they are. Every flaw, every failure.
You will not tell them to keep their mouth shut because what they have to say might embarass you, make you feel uncomfortable.
You will listen to them when they talk passionately about something, even if you don't entirely understand it, even if you have heard it before.
You will value their opinion, even if it is the exact opposite of yours, and you will not condescend to them because you are older, think you are smarter, think you are more experienced, etc. You cannot know the things another person has experienced, no matter how much they have told you, no matter how long you have known them.

If you constantly tell someone that you do not have time to listen, they will eventually stop telling you anything at all.

If I am constantly told that I am doing everything wrong, how can I be proud of myself? How can I have any confidence in what I do or the things I say? If my family looks at me like I am the black sheep and nothing will change that opinion, why on earth should I bother to change?

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