Saturday, May 19, 2007

Younger, Stupider, and Less Mature

Many years ago--I think when I turned 29--I was working for a publishing company as a temp. My job was to input subscriber information into a database, stuff envelopes, and mail out member information. (I still remember my boss' name from those days: Janine Kitihata. Nicest lady. I wonder where she is these days?)

That year, as has been the norm for many years now, I also took my birthday off as a personal holiday. When I returned to work the following day, one of my colleagues said to me, "So, do you feel older, wiser, and more mature?" To which I laughed and said, "What? As opposed to younger, stupider, and less mature?"

I've been thinking about that a bit lately and wondering if I am becoming wiser and more mature. (Certainly I'm older. There's no not becoming that. You just do obviously. But the other two aren't givens, are they?) I'd like to think I am. But then again, it may just be that living and working in this town has so beaten me down, I'm too tired to fight for my voice any longer.

What I do know about how I've changed, and perhaps even "wised up", is this:
  • I no longer say every little thing that pops into my head to everyone within hearing. Some comments, retorts, opinions, etc. are best left unsaid, or only shared with a select few.
  • I don't have to have the last word. Sometimes, it's just best to let it go and walk away.
  • I don't feel compelled to constantly point out other people's quirks, boo boos, mispellings, and flaws. At least, I try not to.
  • I've found that when I do focus on the aforementioned, I become judgmental and I end up not liking myself for often being too harsh and petty.
  • When others focus on the afore-aforementioned with me, I begin to lose respect for that person. (That's not to say I'm not open to unsolicited opinions or criticisms, but some stuff is just so patronizing and--what was that word a friend of mine used the other day? Oh yes--pedantic and know-it-all, it's tiresome.)
  • I don't do perfectionism anymore. Particularly because being a perfectionist means, nothing I do or anyone else does will ever be good enough for me. That kind of attitude is equally tiresome and lacks graciousness.
  • Empowering people is not a threat, but a gift and it shows a level of self-confidence in oneself and confidence in others that results in people who want to play together and play together well.
  • Life is too short, therefore, I wish to fill mine with love, laughter, and good friends. Toxic people just aren't worth it, no matter who they are or what the setting is.
I'm going to stop there, because that's about all the supposed maturity and wisdom I can stand for one day! Thanks for reading.

Photo copyright: Thinker on a Rock by Brian Flanagan, D.C. Confidential (Janet M. Kincaid, 05/07)

5 comments:

Kimberly said...

Those are amazing things to have learned. Thanks for teaching me. I agree with all of them!

Adriana Velez said...

I thought you were pretty wise last year, too ;)

Hope you had a splendid birth week!

Janet M Kincaid said...

Kim: Well, you know what they say? Great minds think alike! ;-)

Adriana: Thank you! (Although, I just went back and looked at last year's entries. They were mostly about my grandfather dying and my family's trip to Utah and Wyoming for his funeral.)

Hope you had a splendid week, too! The restaurant you and Lane went to and that you described in your blog sounded absolutely divine!

Sister Mary Lisa said...

I really like your list. I could use some of that advice...like really, I should post it on my mirror to read daily until it sinks into this thick skull of mine.

:)

Terri said...

I love that.