Why Bother to Notice What’s Right?
I have the tendency to see the flaws in someone before I notice the good in them. In my students, I can’t help but see their spelling errors the moment they hand in a paper. In other situations, such as swimming laps in the pool, I espy a defect in someone’s freestyle. This inclination of mine, to notice the flaw before anything else, may or may not be worth analyzing. I could just always blame it on my mother.
But, no matter where this particular propensity of mine came from, I definitely have the ability to alter it. So, I’ve decided to do just that. Instead of naturally seeing what is wrong with a person, I want to start seeing what is right. I not only want to practice looking for the good in someone, I want to bring it to their attention as well.
More than a Compliment
Recently, I joined a group called Toastmasters. I joined for several different reasons, but one member in particular, inspired me to take the step and make the commitment to become a member after I attended only one meeting. She, unlike anyone else in the group, stands out to me because she recognizes something good about everyone. But not only does she detect a good quality, but she also has a natural way of pointing out the good that she sees in the person. But it is much more than just paying someone a compliment.
Miss Dee’s ability to appreciate something in someone else encourages them to grow and to sit up a little taller. From a personal standpoint, she inspired me to make the commitment to join Toastmasters after only one meeting.
I want to be more like her and here’s why. Her approach to promoting change is different from what I am used to. For instance, when I recognize an error in myself or another, it makes sense to me that the mistake should be pointed out in order to correct it. This approach, in some cases, is true. But not in all situations. From personal experience, I know what it feels like to have a personal flaw pointed out; a little shameful, and a little condemning. Comparatively, noticing what is right or good about someone, produces a whole different set of sensations.
When Miss Dee pointed out to me my qualities of insight and curiosity instead of my inability to think fast on my feet, I was invigorated. Public speaking, which is what Toastmasters is all about, is not one of my strengths. It is something I aspire to, which is one of the reasons I joined the group. But to be infused with what is already right and good about me will keep me refreshed as I journey toward my goal.
Why bother to notice what is right about someone? It is worth it to notice what is good and right about someone because when we do so, we inspire them to aspire.