Mistakes are a part of life. They are also lessons to be learned. Mistakes come in all shapes and sizes. We might make mistakes in our diet, our personal choices, doing simple math, or even making the wrong turn while driving. However, the mistakes that have the most impact are the ones that affect our relationship with others. These are the mistakes we must heed carefully. It is these mistakes that we must learn from and make improvements in ourselves. If leadership is about one life positively influencing another, then we must always be improving ourselves.
Personally, I have only a few people I keep very close to me, and these people are my strength and pillar when things get difficult in my life. These are the people I call first, want to spend time with most, and invest much of my time in. The closest, and most important, individual in my life is my wife. We have been married for over 12 years. In those 12 years, I have found myself in a constant state of improvement. I have learned the ugly sides of myself that I absolutely despise, and I have been fighting a constant battle to get rid of the ugly parts of me that hinder our relationship.
I am what many consider to be an “A type” personality; and no that doesn’t stand for “A$$hole” personality; even though I might act like one from time to time. According to wellness coach and author, Elizabeth Scott, “Type A personality may include operating at a more urgent pace, demonstrating higher levels of impatience, having a more competitive nature, getting upset easily, and associating self-worth with achievement.” Scott’s definition is pretty spot on when defining my personality. These qualities are not bad when they are kept in check. However, there are times when these qualities come out in ways that are disrespectful and careless. Most of the time, we tend to strike out at those closest to us, or at least I do, and this causes great rifts and problems in the relationships of those who are most dear to me
My wife is a very patient woman, but there are times when my “A type” personality comes off as arrogant, disrespectful, careless, or a mixture of all three, and her patience runs out. When this happens, she begins building walls between her and I, and a disturbance in the force is awakened. There are very few things in this world that I allow affect me, but the one that affects me the most is a rift in my wife’s and I relationship. The disturbance that was created was because of my lack of empathy, compassion, and out right stubbornness. I know that I create these problems, and I know this is partly due to my personality type. However, as I stated earlier, my personality type is not bad unless it goes unchecked.
I am not great at backing off on my pride and arrogance, but I have gotten a lot better. I have learned that I need time to reflect, own my faults, and then humbly approach my wife, admit my mistakes, and ask for forgiveness. This is where my wife shows her grace and pure heart, as she always forgives me and wants to rebuild what I broke. My stubbornness can get the better of me, and there have been times that I have gone a day or two not owning my issues and problems. When that happens, the void and darkness that is created between my wife and I is heavy and consuming. This is a feeling I have grown to hate and despise with every fiber of my being. I eventually break down my prideful wall, realize that my actions and behaviors were not loving or respectful, and I humbly come back to my wife owning my mistakes. Have I ever mentioned how much I do not deserve this amazing woman?
I never want to jeopardize my relationship with my wife, and the only way to do that is to keep being self-reflective, keep my personality type in check, and stay humble. In other words, I am, and forever will be, a work in progress; and I am okay with that. The legacy I want to leave behind is that I never settled or made excuses for my actions, but held myself accountable and worked hard to better myself until the day I died.
- Never stop working on you. We all have faults and make mistakes, but don’t make excuses for them, rather work to make yourself better.
- Pride comes before the fall. Stay humble and do not allow pride to take hold in your life. Admit your faults and mistakes and push yourself to be better.
- The only way relationships can grow is if we are willing to own our mistakes and failures and purpose within ourselves to become better, not only for the relationship, but for ourselves as well.
- The only person hindering you is you.
As always, stay humble and serve well.