The Moment

When individuals become overly accustomed to every day routines and behaviors, it becomes less easy for them to adapt and keep their own feelings in check relative to the other individuals involved in a certain set of circumstances.  This is even more relevant in a very diverse environment such as the society we find ourselves in today in that we must accept the multitude of different personalities who happen to cross each other’s paths day in and day out.  There are moments we lose patience with certain individuals who simply do not operate on the same wave-length as we do.  Today, I had that moment; that “aha” moment.

I am currently taking a leadership course in which discussion tends to be a primary tenant.  Today, I was not in a very good mood because of a personal issue that was weighing heavily on my mind.  While discussing the assignment, I became overly irritated at another student who was giving examples of how the assigned task within the curriculum didn’t apply to him.  We were assigned a personal speech to inform our class of the reasons we do the job we do, and why we have decided (if we have) to continue that career path.  He stated he would be unable to complete the assigned speech because he did not have enough material in his experience to brief for the requisite time limit.  The instructor requested he stand up and provide an impromptu example.  His attempt appeared to me to be deliberately lazy, as if to garner pity from the rest of the class.  At that point, I exclaimed to him, “Well, it’s the assigned task.  There is no sense trying to argue with the curriculum.  If you are in that mind set, you won’t pass.”

Almost immediately, I regretted my actions.  I realized my perceptions were not the only ones in the room and that my response probably hurt his feelings.  Several other members of the class quickly jumped to his aid and provided positive feedback,.  At that point, I truly felt like a heel.  At the next break, I approached him and apologized.  I then clarified my meaning that if we challenged the curriculum and became closed minded to the simple truth that we must complete the assigned task, we would have difficulty succeeding.  Then, at the earliest possible moment, I also apologized to the class for my outbreak and clarified my point to them as well.

It is plainly obvious to me, my mood can adversely effect the way I receive different personality types.  This “aha” moment gave me the perspective I needed to go forward in this course without jumping to my own conclusions and being insensitive to the feelings of others.  Did blasting this individual in front of the entire class make anyone feel or perform better?  The regret I had for my actions certainly did not have a positive effect on my performance or emotions.  I appreciate moments like this.  I let my emotions get ahead of me and it only ended in regret and embarrassment.  In the future I intend to embrace the differences in others and attempt to adapt to their personality types when communicating my feelings to them.  Personal success and emotional wellness is a more likely result if I adopt this behavior.  That is all.

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