TIL

Today is just a bunch of random thoughts, reflections, and experiences from throughout the week.

Blind Spots I have strong opinions about many things. One of these things is that empowerment is a better approach than victimization. It viscerally bothers me greatly whenever I notice people victimizing themselves.

Recently, when I was talking to my coach at work, in listening to myself talk, I caught myself victimizing myself with certain situations at work. As much as it was an epiphany, it definitely remains a struggle. Part of me is able to recognize how I’m victimizing myself, and part of me is even able to to recognize the choices I have in these situations that I could make and remove myself from the position of being a victim; however, part of me also feels like these choices are beyond what I should have to do, and that I’m somehow entitled to more than what I’ve received. And then again, part of me is judging myself for even feeling that way.

It’s nice having someone there to help bring my blind spots to light, though.

Auto Pilot Recently, I’ve really come to admire how present some people can be in the moment (or at least, to the extent I’m able to observe them doing so). Most of it are just little things I just catch in the moment. For instance, I noticed someone remembering to repeat questions, name the speaker, etc. in presentations with remote attendees and an audience member forgets to speak into the microphone for the remotes to hear. Also, I noticed someone getting frustrated, but then catching themselves and taking a moment to inhale before responding.

This is something I would like to get better at, and I have lots of opportunities to do so. But I find it difficult to not get overwhelmed when the big picture and the present moment have so many different things I could choose to address.

Responsibility This is an ongoing struggle for me. Philosophically, I like the idea of increasing the number of things within my scope of responsibility. Emotionally, I want my scope of responsibility to stay static and well defined. Unfortunately, in the moment this becomes a battle between the elephant and the rider. I wonder if I’m scared of failure, or maybe even the mere uncertainty of it? Or maybe I’m just lazy and don’t want to take on the additional work of it all?

Alone This morning, I stood alone on the sidewalk underneath the moonlight. I watched as a car pulled up. They kissed and said goodbye, and then she walked away as he turned the car around. And then for a moment, I cried. Because it felt like something so far away in the realm of possibilities; because it was one of those moments where I recognized that may be a future I never experience.

Circles The idea that history repeats itself was especially predominant this past week. Looking at some of Marcus Aurelius’ Meditations, I was surprised at how many of the common problems people seem to face today also existed almost 2000 years ago. Hearing about problems other companies are facing too, I was surprised to learn how much it sounds like a lifecycle for problems that a company tends to go through. As much as we stand on the shoulders of giants, sometimes I really wonder how much we really see from way up high.

Perception (Part 1) This week I spent some time reflecting on how much experience is defined by how we perceive it. When something bad happens, we can interpret it in many different ways: I’m a screw-up; I made a mistake; I can try something new; etc. Similarly, if someone cuts you off in traffic, you can interpret it as: they’re trying to get in your way; they got in your way; there’s now something in your way; etc.

How you perceive things influences your mood and can affect the choices you see as potential options to respond. Hopefully I can grow to become more aware of the colours I’m painting my experiences with.

Perception (Part 2) I got feedback at work that I come off as being organized and disciplined. It was a reminder to me that how we perceive other people doesn’t always reflect reality. Lately, my reviews have fallen off again, but people don’t always see when I drop the things I’m juggling. Similarly, I do think I’m getting better–I caught on pretty early this time that I had let them fall off, and then I made a conscious decision that it was the best course of action at present. But still, it was a good reminder that sometimes we only see people’s highlight reels, and sometimes we only see people when they’re trying to pick themselves off the ground.

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