We have been having some challenges with our eldest daughter, which led to us re-initiating our rules on eating at dinnertime. The “rules” are pretty simple; we’ve both discussed them, agreed them and we know that they work.
They work when we apply them calmly and consistently.
Those with kids know how important consistency is. In fact, we all probably know how important consistency is – whether in a family environment or in the workplace. People need to know what the framework that they’re working (or living in) is and then make their own decisions about whether they want to be part of that.
So it was interesting that at last night’s dinner when my husband initiates the rules (I do hate that word – but it probably does best describe what we are doing) and starts packing up, I go to stop him on the grounds that we are having a picnic, and it’s outside and do the rules really apply in these circumstances?!? (ie – not being very consistent).
He points out that I am not being very helpful and that it is all about being consistent and fair.
I go to defend myself.
And then I had one of those lightbulb moments..
He says “often we might think our friend/partner as being unreasonable yet we see our behaviour as being totally appropriate.”
That is, we excuse and minimize our own behaviour due to circumstances but don’t tolerate that very same behaviour in others.
This has application everywhere. Where we excuse our own team’s performance because of specific circumstances but are quick to rush to judge others.
Can you think of a time where you’ve judged others for behaviour you exhibit (but excuse) yourself?