Thursday, June 7, 2012
Conversation with Mel (not verbatim, but close):
O: As usual, I was doing too many things at once and the chocolate scorched or caramelized. It looked kind of like ganache, so I spread it on some pretzels with some peanut butter and it worked out!
M to J: She's really good at figuring out what to do when something doesn't go according to plan.
O: (in defense) Well, I just hate wasting stuff and it was either that or I was going to have to make the family stand over the bowl with spoons until it was gone (in jest).
Later between Mel and J:
J to M: Yeah, I just love her little critters and animals she makes.
O: Are you talking about me? For real?
J: Yeah, I loved the ball you made and I don't know how you follow the patterns. That's beyond me.
O: It was a lot of fun to make and went super quick. I was surprised....yada, yada.
Notice, not once did I thank either one of them for their compliments. Mel has been a friend of mine for years and J is a degreed art major. I highly value their opinions and reacted as though I don't deserve to hear those things from them. I thought this was an area I have improved in over the years, but the light bulb went on last night showing me the stairway to improvement.
What is so difficult about accepting that someone thinks you are good at something, especially when you can share their sentiment? I notice that I skip the gratitude in favor of a logical, but unnecessary defense for my actions/creations/thoughts/writing. I notice that it often leaks out here. In thinking over this last night, I also recalled feeling more intimidated, thus more likely justifying myself, towards the males I look up to. I feel like that comes from the shortage of verbal praise men offer and being spoiled on the positive feedback many women are anxious to proliferate.
However, I can't do anything to control another person, nor do I want to. I can however, work on my reaction to praise and the lack of gratification I perceive from someone I admire. I am going to try to respond thoughtfully and gratefully when I hear something nice. I am going to avoid interpreting a lack of response from someone else as disdain. Although I have a penchant for self-deprecation, I am going to give myself more gratitude and flexibility. So, thank you Mel and J. You are very kind. Oooo, see! Already improving - baby steps - boogety. ~ OP