Yesterday, Lisa from That’s Why mentioned on her blog a book called “The One Question That Can Save Your Marriage.”
And the One Question from the book is (drum roll please)….
What would it be like to be married to you?
Wow. That really made me think.
What must life be like for Iwanski? Yikes.
Now, to be fair, I think I’m a pretty good wife. I’m generally nice to my hubby and do nice things for him like making Lazy Daisy Bars (which he loves) and scratching his back when it’s itchy.
But I’m certainly not perfect. I’m messy and disorganized and not always safety conscious--but the thing I hate the most is when I’m overly critical of him. And sometimes I don’t even realize this until it’s too late—until Iwanski gets upset and tells me to stop criticizing him. And then I feel really bad.
Why is it that we can’t always see ourselves the way we really are?
I remember one time several years ago at work, when my old boss called me on the phone from her office, and I was ignoring her call because I was really busy working on a project. She started to leave me a voice mail, but then instead chose to yell to me, “Carla! Can you come in here for a minute? I have a question.”
Immediately, I got frustrated with her. You see, she had this bad habit of calling me into her office to ask me the same question I’d answered for her 10 times before—and always right when I was in the middle of completing a project for her. It was extremely annoying to me.
So I stormed off into her office, and said, “How am I supposed to get this project done if I keep getting interrupted?” (Luckily, my boss and I had a great working relationship, so I could talk to her that way.)
She ignored my frustration and went ahead and asked me her questions—which, of course, were ones that I’d answered for her 10 times before.
Finally, she finished asking her questions, and I rushed back to my desk.
Right away I noticed that the voice mail light on my phone was blinking, so I went to listen to my messages.
And I was surprised to hear my own voice on the voice mail. Somehow, my boss apparently had never hung up the phone after calling me, so she had inadvertently recorded our whole conversation on my voice mail.
I was stunned. And ashamed. As clear as day, I could hear my own voice—sounding extremely shrill and impatient-- whining at her about being interrupted.
I could not believe how awful I sounded.
And from then on, I vowed to really pay attention to how I was talking to others.
I learned a big lesson that day—no matter how impatient or frustrated you are, it’s never helpful to yell at someone (especially not your boss!).
And believe me, that lesson has REALLY helped me out in my current job in customer service. No matter how impatient I get sometimes with my customers, I always try to keep it in the back of my mind to be kind.
It’s not always easy, but I’d really like to be the kind of person that can look honestly at myself and not cringe in horror.