It’s been a while since I shared an introspective post, so here’s a “thinker” demonstrated in an analogy.
Imagine if every day at work you have to sit next to someone who has really bad body odor. The odor is nauseating. You put an air freshener at your station, but then it smells like a cow died in a flower garden. You don’t know what to do. You contemplate different ideas. Should I tactfully bring it up? Should I talk to the boss to see if there is anything that can be done?One day, when you’re in the breakroom getting a breather and a cup of coffee, your smelly next door neighbor moseys in. Another coworker steps in behind him and scrunches his nose, his mouth turned down in disgust. His eyes shift from you, to the culprit and he says, “You might want to take a shower, buddy. You’re smellin’ ripe.”
You almost spit out your coffee. You want to applaud, laugh, hide and scold all at the same time. You step around both of them and escape the awkward situation. How dare that idiot in the breakroom say something so inappropriate. You decide to race to your desk, scoop up your belongings, and leave work early for the day. You didn’t want to have to face your work-neighbor after that inappropriate comment. By tomorrow, you believe it will be forgotten.
The next days comes, and your work-neighbor doesn’t smell. Was it just a fluke? The following day comes, and he still doesn’t smell. This continues, and you realize that the inappropriate comment actually helped!
I wrote this analogy, because I’ve been hearing the word “inappropriate” get thrown around a lot lately. People are using that phrase even when a comment isn’t directed toward them. I’ve been asking myself why people get disturbed, and what makes us deem something “inappropriate?” Just because something seems inappropriate doesn’t mean that what was said is untrue.
A long time ago, I used to complain about how misunderstood I felt by everyone in my life. I didn’t know how to be anything but truthful. I was never tactless like the coworker in the breakroom, so why didn’t people appreciate my honesty? One day someone told me, “Just because you speak the truth doesn’t mean people have to like it. There are truths that are ugly, and people don’t want to hear it.”
If introspection was commonly used, people might ask themselves, “Is it the inappropriate comment or the truth that disturbs me? Which is worse, the inappropriate comment or an emotional reaction?” This may all stem from the over-compensating of political correctness these days, and could be a phase that will pass. As for me, I know some truths are ugly, but facing them is the only way to clean things up (pun intended) and become a better person.
Once I get past the darkness, or the initial pain of the truth.I’m free to see the entire picture.