Why are you so critical of everyone else?

We aren’t really good at evaluating ourselves.

We have this built in defense mechanism that tries to protect us from pain. This defense mechanism changes the way we see, hear, smell, feel and remember. It does it’s job by protecting us, but it isn’t based in reality.

This is where the phrase “you hear what you want to hear” comes from. This is how people seem to miss things that are obvious to the rest of us.

This defense mechanism is guided by our emotions. Therein lies the problem. Our emotions aren’t always aligned with the facts. We see what we want to see and hear what we want to hear and remember what we want to remember.

I see this in police work every day. How can two witnesses recall seemingly different facts about the exact same incident? It happens all the time. Emotions can change the way you view everything……especially yourself.

If you want to be successful at anything you must first evaluate yourself honestly, without the handicap of emotion. What are your strengths? What are your weaknesses? What do you need assistance with? Who can help you achieve that goal? How important is it to you? What are you willing to sacrifice? What are you not willing to sacrifice?

Be as honest as you can. Pretend you are evaluating someone else’s performance. We are masters at breaking down someone else’s strengths, weaknesses and abilities. We even go so far as to compare them to how we would have handled it. Think about how critical you are of everyone else (friends, family, co-workers, even professional athletes and coaches).

If you hold yourself up to that same level of criticism, you will learn a ton about yourself. And that will give you insight into what needs to change. Or, you can continue to be easy on yourself and live a lie. It’s up to you.

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