Tuesday, May 24, 2011

The one where I realize that I'm the jerk

Tuesday, May 24, 2011
I came to a really uneasy conclusion a few weeks ago.

I love doling out I Told You So's. When under extreme stress, I am the jerk who wanders around pointing out errors or potential problems, but offering little in the form of solutions.

I take great satisfaction in being proven right in unfortunate circumstances.

In short, I am the jerk in your workplace. Or, uh, at home. If you're unfortunate enough to live with me full-time.

Sorry, Gary.

Obviously, you can understand that this does not sit well with me. It's hard when things that are otherwise advantages, or strengths - like being able to see past step one and two, down the road to step six where - OOPS! - there be dragons and problems and issues - become weaknesses, or negative attributes.

But when pressured, when other stress comes into play, when I'm not my Best Self, the way that manifests is really icky. And really awful to deal with.

So I'm trying. I'm trying to point out the potential problems that lay ahead along WITH the solution. Or at least, more than a smug "I told you that would happen and you didn't listen" retort.

I used to get really bad growing pains in my shins when I was a child. I'm 5'9. A lot of that height came quickly, and suddenly, and I used to cry out at night for my dad to come and rub my legs to make it stop hurting.

So opening up here, by saying that I recognize that I exhibit douche behaviours...that's me calling out in the middle of the night. Growing up can suck sometimes. But maybe someone out there will come help me deal with some of that pain?

Does anyone out there have any suggestions? Things I could read? Exercises I could try? Thoughts to ponder?

Or at least maybe someone could provide me with a stronger metaphor?


Marisa said...

I struggle with this too. Those of us who can see two or five or ten steps ahead are prone to it... and the frustration of dealing with people who don't connect the same dots.

I don't have any great tricks, but I can commiserate. And honestly? Sometimes you have to let the train wreck happen. Sometimes people can't be warned out of their futures.

Meg said...

Thanks for commiserating. It's nice to know I'm not alone!

I've been trying to pair solutions with things that I point out, which is received far better.