Blogversation 2012: What is your worst personal trait and how do you deal with it?

Throughout this year, several bloggers will engage in a conversation here and on their blogs — asking questions of each other and responding. Others are absolutely welcome to join the conversation, as well. Learn more about the ladies of Blogversation 2012.

Today we shake it up in the Blogversation — we’re starting a rotation of each of the participating bloggers posing a question of the others in the group, and of course, anyone else who wants to jump in.

Today’s question comes from Maria Stuart, http://mariastuart.com, @mariastuart on Twitter:

What is your worst personal trait and how do you deal with it to be a better person?

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Categories: lifestyle

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6 replies

  1. Fear, Worry, and Doubt are three bullies that grasp hands tightly and circle me constantly while I am out to play. When these mean-spirited triplets join forces, they are like a 3-headed nasty dragon. And when they come my way, it’s harder to make decisions, take steps toward my dreams, and move in the direction I want to go in.

    So when these gnarly beasts come lumbering at me, I pull out one of the weapons in my arsenal so I can keep being the force I want to be in the world.

    For starters, there’s physical movement. Connecting with my physical power helps me deliver a nice firm scissor-kick to the back of fear’s wobbly over-sized head.

    Thinking of people who embody courage – especially artists and athletes – and asking “What would they do?” helps me chase fear back to it’s cage.

    Focusing on the results I want and how great it will be to get them keeps doubt in its musty-smelling cave.

    Finally, connecting with friends and other cheer-leaders in my life is pretty much like pepper-spraying the triple-headed Fear-Doubt-Worry beast right in its ugly face.

    • Keep pepper-spraying the triple-headed Fear-Doubt-Worry beast. Enlist new buddies — like Lady Luck, Chance, Charm, and Inspiration. Join forces with these girls to beat the beast and transform your situation into something lighter and brighter. Move through the darkness with confidence. Kick butt!

  2. Since Maria posed this question, it seems perfect to draw on a job evaluation I’ve saved from 1994, back when I was a young reporter working for Maria at the Livingston County Press.

    Maria wrote her evaluation, then her boss, Phil Jerome, reviewed and added his comments, which included, “I think very highly of Colleen. … In certain areas she has set standards which should be emulated by everyone. Also, I’m glad you talked about the need for Colleen to learn to become patient with “those around her who may not be as quick.'” He called it a “maturity issue, and added, “if she expects everyone to be as quick as she is, I’m afraid she’s going to be sorely disappointed throughout her life.”

    Into my file this went, where it became one of the reasons my next boss in the company, Jim Mason, chose me to be founding editor of a new business journal. He said he wanted a strong leader who would hold the publication to high standards, and he read Phil’s comment not as a weakness but as a sign I would push myself and others to meet those standards.

    This is not to say Phil wasn’t right. I *can* be impatient, and my perfectionist tendencies do not always serve me well. I’ve worked hard to develop more tolerance, and to remember not to let great get in the way of good. I can still take Maria and Phil’s advice to become more patient, including with myself. It’s a frequent topic of conversation at my weekly piano lessons. I’m trying.

    But to build on what Kim and Amy have said, I’ve also tried to recognize how that negative trait sometimes does serve me, and to figure out if there’s a way to maybe harness it and keep it a little in check.

    One of the truest expressions of love I know is that when John gets frustrated with one of my flaws — either this one, or one of the many others on the list — he’ll quickly point out that if I wasn’t that thing that’s pissing him off, I wouldn’t be the woman he loves.

    I’m sometimes high strung and up tight, but that also means I care about getting things done well. I’m anxious about money, which helps keep us on track to have a good nest egg in the bank. I’m critical of myself and others, which means I’m conscious of how I can work to be better and who I’m surrounding myself with.

    I think many personal attributes have both a positive and a negative aspect, so maybe my best answer to the second half of Maria’s question is “balance.”

  3. I’ve struggled with this because my “worst” trait to some is what others find the most intoxicating about me. I am bubbly and enthusiastic. There’s really no way around it, and I’m my best self when I embrace my bubbles and enthusiasm. That being said, I’ve learned that not everyone appreciates (or can stand) me when I think I’m being my best. I am also a morning person, which compounds the problem at times. I’ve learned to read my audience, when necessary, and I’ve learned not to take it personally if someone isn’t as excited about me being me as I am. If circumstances dictate that we have to work together or spend a good deal of time together, I am self-aware enough to realize I can make behavior adjustments to help ease the pain (for example: instead of a bright GOOD MORNING and a smile; a warm smile is sometimes sufficient).

  4. This is tricky to answer because I am working on no longer identifying this way to the parts of myself that I don’t consider my strengths. Once you subscribe to the belief that all people are truly compassionate by nature and that it’s simply the strategies we use that are either costly or not -you begin to receive yourself and all others from a place that isn’t with a judgement of good or bad, right or wrong. Even the most horrible behavior can usually wind up being traced back to a need that was trying to be met.

    This way of living was introduced to me with Marshall Rosenberg’s language NonViolent Communication (aka NVC). http://www.nonviolentcommunication.com

    So Maria if you will allow me to respectfully rephrase your question to “What is a personal trait of mine that doesn’t meet my needs?” then I would say I still more often than not, forget to NOT make myself and others “wrong.” What I’m doing about it is practicing NVC more and more every day to help get myself out from under this cultural, religious and societal belief system that their is a “good” or “bad” or a “right” or “wrong.”

Trackbacks

  1. Blogversation 2012: Wrapping up a year of online conversation « Newvine Growing — exploring evolution, revolution and living life intentionally

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