OUR COMPLAINTS ABOUT OTHERS ARE OFTEN COMPLAINTS ABOUT OURSELVES
“Audrey,” a copy editor, recently came to me quite upset that she had spent her weekend working on a “rush” job for her client, Paul.
Audrey was convinced that “Paul didn’t value her” because Paul had made a challenging, last-minute request that ruined Audrey’s weekend.
In addition to being a “demanding” client, Paul routinely did not pay his bills on time.
As we did some coaching, it became clear that Audrey wasn’t valuing Audrey when she agreed to change her weekend plans to finish work for Paul.
Audrey decided to own the thought, “I value me.”
When she began valuing herself, her time and her work, she made changes to her client agreement. She included parameters for weekend work, the extra costs involved, and the necessity of being paid promptly.
She then billed Paul for the extensive work. Paul paid her promptly. 😁
WHAT’S HAPPENING ON “YOUR SIDE OF THE FENCE?”
Noticing your part in a situation is learning to look at the facts in an objective way.
I like to use the phrase, what is “your side of the fence?”
In every situation, there are two parts, and we each play a part.
Simply asking, “How did I contribute to the situation?” is very powerful.
Audrey’s complaint about Paul not “valuing” her was really a complaint about herself.
When Audrey took responsibility for her actions in the situation, she could then give Paul parameters for working with her.
Paul may still make last-minute requests or choose not to pay her on time, but now Audrey can decide whether to work with him – or not.
LOOK IN THE MIRROR…WITH HUMOR & COMPASSION
The next time you find yourself upset with someone or criticizing them for a particular action, try this:
- Take a moment to see where that criticism could apply to yourself. Have a sense of humor about it!
- Determine how you may have contributed to the situation.
- Don’t beat yourself – or the other person – up! We are ALL work-in-progress humans. 😉
- Do your best to frame the situation in an objective, non-personal way.
When we own our criticisms of others, it empowers us to take responsibility for the parts of the situation that we have control over.
P.S.—If you want to turn your criticisms into positive actions to make your life AWESOME…join my next “Transform Your Life!” Group starting this Saturday 4/28!!