I have a person in my life who, while important to me and whom I love, is nevertheless irritating as hell sometimes. This person always has to be right about everything, always has to have the last word, always wants to hog the limelight, always has to be heard, always has to get their way about everything, and can be an annoying know-it-all. This person frequently pushes all my buttons at once.
I have spent hours fuming about this person. I also wondered why I keep letting myself get so upset by this person over and over again. I keep saying to myself, “if they weren’t such a <insert rude name of your choice here>, there wouldn’t be a problem. It’s all THEIR fault!”
I looked down while thinking this, and realized that my right hand was clenched, my forefinger pointing out. My other fingers were pointed towards ME.
It came to me in a blinding burst of light: OH. MY. GRAVY–I AM EXACTLY LIKE THIS PERSON! I too am irritating, self-righteous, I feel I am right most of the time, I love to have the last word, I hog the limelight, I must be heard, I want my way, and I am a definitely a self-righteous know-it-all.
Surprise, surprise–these are the reasons I have a problem with this person. Talk about the pot calling the kettle black…sheesh, so much for my college education (which included psychology courses)! This is a common scenario–we abhor in others the things that we ourselves do consciously or unconsciously. It’s very human to feel that we are right, that we know better, that we have all the answers, and that everyone should agree with us—we feel we must be heard.
Well, call me clueless. But today, also call me contrite. My time would be far better spent improving my own habits rather than sniping at this person who is important to me. This person does not need to change; I do. Just because I am at an age where I ought to know better doesn’t necessarily mean that I DO know better. When it comes down to it, I am still that mouthy 5-year old who wants to be heard, to be loved, to be acknowledged and to be judged a good person. I think that from now on I will put my efforts into cleaning up my own act instead of criticizing others.
Someone a whole lot smarter than I am once said, ‘don’t be so quick to point out the speck in someone else’s eye and ignore the log in yours.’ Since it’s going to take me a while to dislodge that sucker, please know that I am working on my own faults and foibles.
Wish me luck!