Our Words Reveal us - and the “Phony” was originally posted on Monday, January 7th, 2008
We were having a family discussion about why some kids and also some adults seem to find it necessary to tease, berate, call names or bully others. I was impressed with the following reasons the kids came up with …
- They are insecure
- They don’t feel good about themselves and don’t want anyone else too feel good either
- They feel threatened in some way by the person they are attacking (lot’s of possibilities with this one - Jealousy & Envy probably the leading causes)
- They don’t like themselves
- They don’t really understand who they are
After a good discussion about how what we say to others and how we treat them is much more a reflection of ourselves than anyone else I felt a renewed confidence in my children’s ability to respond to people who may be critical of them.
“It’s been my experience that people who have the strongest sense of who they are spend the least amount of time talking critically of others, or worrying about what others may think. “
Recently someone criticized a political candidate that I admired calling him a phony. I asked the critic on what grounds did he consider him “a phony”. His reply, “Nobody has a family like that, they’re all a bunch of fakes.”
“Like what?” I said, probing for specifics.
The critic responded citing a video clip of the candidate engaged in a family discussion, “You know, that they all get along and have family discussions without talking over one another, acting all respectful and stuff…. real families just don’t look, talk, or act that way.”
I knew immediately the video clip he was referring too… it was one of main reasons that my wife and I identified so strongly with the candidate. What my friend was calling phony, was to us, a living reality. What my friend couldn’t fathom as being real, was in fact how our own family culture operates. (most of the time) But since what my friend saw was so far from any reality of his own life experiences, the possibility of it being real was nonexistent. Since his own family, nor any other family he knew of acted in that manner no family could. So the only explanation for it was “they were phony”.
As I was pondering on these 2 thoughts - an idea came into my mind that I have tried to express below.
What we can’t imagine or envision as a reality in our own lives, we often dismiss as a fanciful fantasy or phony in the lives of others. In so doing we stop ourselves from not only seeing another in a potentially better way, but of becoming better ourselves. ~Kirk Weisler
How often to judge others - or form damning opinions of things simply because of ignorance born of a lack of any personal experience?
Remember - “That Your Life Will Get Better as You Do”