Have you ever, in your head or out loud, compared what you do for a living to what someone else does? What about your ability to do things compared to other people? Come on…admit it…you have! I certainly know that I have.
Today, I had the opportunity to shadow one of my colleagues as they did their job. A job, that I always thought, while tricky in its right, wasn’t ‘that difficult’. But today, after spending about 6 hours with my colleague, I’ve gained a whole new respect for his position. The things that he did today for some of his clients, I’m not sure I’d have the patience to even think about doing it! But had I not taken the time to spend with him to see what a day in his life was like, I’d always have my opinion of what he did and never have known the truth.
So my ‘aha’ moment today was that you can really never understand a person until you walk a mile in their shoes. It’s definitely not the first time that you’ve heard this, but it’s hard right? It’s hard because we all think that everyone should be just like us, be just as efficient as us, or be just as good as we are. But the truth is that we’re all different and that’s the beauty of life. We all come with our own uniqueness and it begins with us, as individuals, to see those uniqueness in others and accept it.
So the next time you think about thinking that someone could or should be doing something differently, stop and think about the experiences that they might have had in the past, that now dictate their actions.
- That mom with a screaming toddler in the grocery – don’t assume (besides…speaking as a mom, it’s not her fault! It’s definitely the kid! JOKING!!!)
- That woman at work who seems to always be so difficult to get along with – don’t assume
- That man who cut you off while driving today – don’t assume
If we all did that for each other, the world just might be that much easier to face for some people, not to mention, better for us to enjoy!
P.S. Do you think my colleague thinks my job is easy? Maybe we’ll get him to shadow me next! 🙂