Everyone loves to be appreciated, respected, adored even. That’s why it’s not very easy to take criticism. I know some people say they love criticism and it’s good for the soul, yen yen yen, I hear you. But if we’re being honest, and you’re like me, criticism pinches the soul. You do something and think it’s the best thing after sliced bread and someone shreds it to pieces, starting with, “with all due respect” and statements following that lack all forms of respect.
That’s actually not the point of this post. I got thinking of how sometimes I’ve been told to change stuff that I can’t necessarily control; people commenting about my facial expressions, or my ‘serious behavior’ whatever that means. “You need to lighten up more”, some would say. While in my head I’m thinking “I’m pretty light as it is, thank you.”
I’m beginning to understand that people will often offer ‘advice’ in line with what they are accustomed to. So if someone is extroverted (life of the party, friends with the entire world), they’re most likely going to encourage people to be more interactive; while an introvert will think a charismatic person is doing too much and probably wish they would tone it down a notch. But I think this is just life, this mix of persons with different approaches to things is just how it’s meant to be. We can’t all be the same.
I’ve heard people say a person is too emotional or too dramatic. As much as it may seem true on the surface, I realise that the trait that may seem exaggerated in a person is usually very essential to the purpose or calling of that person. A person who is very talkative and passionate may become an advocate or a preacher. A dramatic person might very well end up in the Entertainment industry and we all love entertainment, don’t we? See how it works? See how it all fits together?
I think I’m coming to a place where I understand the selfishness in forcing someone to change a part of who there are just because I may not understand or appreciate it. I am learning that although I may not be able to associate with all persons, I am called to love them regardless and quite frankly, love doesn’t stress people out (1 Cor 13: 4-13).
I have enough of my own self to improve on, and I think I should save my energy doing that. So let’s leave people be, and give them room to express themselves as they are comfortable doing. Life can be hard already. Don’t add to people’s wahala.
Have a stress- free day!