Tag Archives: personal growth

Looking for Lessons

19 Mar

“I cannot be trusted with almond butter.” -me

I try to learn. I make a conscious effort to reflect on my behavior, as well as that of others so I can learn something from it. Often times, this ends up being a self-assessment; I know immediately that I should have reacted differently, used more careful words or just listened rather than speaking. When I am with someone who wows me- either because of their success or charisma- I try to learn from them, too. I enjoy being around people who posses the traits I want to have when I “grow up”. They make me want to better myself. Much to the chagrin of my family and husband sometimes, I’m always striving for more.

As I approach the end of hump day, I can say that I didn’t go looking for this week’s lessons. They found me. Or rather, they blindsided me. An issue that arose among members of a board over which I preside had me fuming Monday evening. (I take this work way too personal.) I don’t know if I spent more time that night thinking of how to handle it or pretending not to be awake and on my phone in bed every time my husband rolled over. Of course, the next morning I had a clearer perspective on the issue and realized it wasn’t remotely close to the end of the world. I handled it like a rational human being (pats self on back). I listened to each person express their feelings, validated how they felt (without casting blame) and pointed out ways to improve the process.

Dealing with the dynamics of board members varied backgrounds, ages and abilities is hard. Really hard. Not to mention all the responsibility that just goes with being the unpaid leader of a nonprofit in the eyes of the IRS and rest of the world. I don’t feel grown up enough for that job 99.9% of the time. But rarely are we already prepared for the opportunities that present themselves to us. We have to learn as we go. We have to look for the lessons.

Today, on a lighter note, was a different kind of  learning opp in my paid job. It was actually a huge mental victory, which had me fist pumping on the way home from a great meeting with a donor with a big heart. It was validating that my weekends spent listening to online lectures and reading about the taxation of gifts through the CAP program are worthwhile. In short, it was a “yay me” moment.  The lesson ? Trust the process.

Tonight, I’ll leave you with a lesson that I’ve been learning and relearning ever since I began to explore clean eating six months ago: I cannot be trusted with almond butter. A new jar, a spoon and I cannot be in the same room. While this sweet delicacy is a great alternative to the gunk found in traditional peanut butter, it’s not meant to be consumed in the quantities in which I want to consume it.

But I just keep trying.