Sunday, June 10, 2012

#23: Call attention to people's mistakes indirectly

My husband, Alan, and I had a real "date night" this weekend to celebrate our 5th anniversary.   Alan is a huge supporter of my blog project so we discussed Principle 23 as we walked along the river.  Our conversation made Principle 23 crystal clear to me!  A few months ago, I told you all that we were taking part in a "Love & Logic" parenting class.  One of the most interesting lessons we learned during that time involved how to conduct "quiet time" (similar to a time-out) with our toddler, Tyler.  The Love & Logic instructors emphasized that we should not explain to Tyler why he was in "quiet time" or what he did wrong.  This, they assured us, would be insulting to our two-year old.  He knows what he did wrong the minute a time-out happens!

WOW! If a two-year old knows what he did wrong, then certainly adults do too.  If we are insulting a two-year old's intelligence by pointing out his mistakes, then what must we be doing to adults when we call attention to their errors?

I recently had an experience where one of the professionals in our firm needed credit hours quickly before the deadline approached.  Although he had known about this deadline for two years, we were still scrambling to see if he had any other hours that we could report.  The teacher and mother in me wanted to lecture this individual.  "Why did you wait to the last minute?"  Instead, I just helped.  I evaluated his coursework, completed the paperwork necessary to submit some additional hours, and breathed a sigh of relief when we received an e-mail confirming that everything was in order.  I also received an e-mail from the individual with these simple words: "You rock!  Thank you."

I would take Principle 23 one step further.  Sometimes we don't even need to call attention to people's mistakes indirectly.  We just need to help in whatever way we can.  What will we do to help each other this week?

1 comment:

  1. Wow, Marisa (and Alan), what an awesome post. I'm going to share this with everyone at work. I can't wait for Principle #24!