How we treat others is important.
Hi. My name is…..
What do you do?
How often do we start a conversation this way? It is a simple and an ?????? unobtrusive ?????? way of getting to know others, but oh how many times I have had to be careful to not mentally ‘label’ someone because of what they do and how they have introduced themselves.
What we do in life is not who we are.
My personal experience of this continues to be a clear reminder of how easily I can ‘box’ people and from this make assumptions as to who they are as a person, what they believe and what support they may be able to provide for me.
Sadly, we have lots of models of how not to behave towards others. We live in a culture where people are so often treated with disdain and disrespect and often due to the position they hold in life.
Personally, I experienced this some years ago and although I was shocked, hurt and very disappointed at the time, I have since then been able to use the experience as a valuable learning tool in the practice of getting to know others.
The role in my life changed from an everyday community volunteer, (along with the fulltime role of wife and mum of four) to a paid Breakfast radio co-host/personality. Prior to the commencement of this role there were several acquaintances that on a regular basis were courteous towards me but never really interested in developing a friendship or knowing me further. This was not a bother to me, nor an offence, that is until…….
A short time after commencing my radio position, I was introduced by some of these acquaintances as a close friend of theirs, even though they knew little more than my first name, and I theirs. The first time this happened I was in shock and although hurt, I continued with the introduction thinking I could discuss this further with them at a later date.
Clearly, I was not necessarily liked or accepted because of who I was, but because of what I now did, quite a difficult scenario to process. How do I react to such behaviour? Is this a personal issue I needed to deal with or simply the incorrect behaviour of others?
Sure, I loved my new role as radio host, the variables of the job were great, the relationships built and skills learnt were amazing, and since I love to talk – well radio was perfect for me. I loved being a part of the media world and to this day appreciate the opportunities this role brought me.
I was oblivious to the type of challenges this role could bring outside of the studio and I had no idea on how to react to such behaviours.
The unexplainable and expected hurt caused me to spend personal time seeking God and what I could learn not only about myself but the responses of others.
Through every challenge in life there is the opportunity not only to grow and learn but also to reflect and display grace towards others.
I remind myself of what has been labelled the Golden Rule, as Jesus taught us:
“Do to others as you would have them do to you.” Luke 6:31 (NIV)
Finding the best in others helps my behaviour towards them, it improves how I react and most definitely helps me to show grace. Oh – and I have learnt the hard way
· What we do in life, is not who we are
· Others are not there for what they can do for me
You are very important and the world is better because of you, thank you!