Monday, June 18, 2012

What if you started over?

Yesterday was a tough day... a very tough day.

I like to think that I'm a normally optimistic kind of guy, but Father's Day brings out a rush of emotion that I'm never quite ready to handle.  I know I'm not the only one in the situation that I'm in.  There are thousands of step-dad's out there with no biological kids of their own.  I feel your pain.  And yesterday once again opened my eyes to the power of perspective.

I've heard the "you're a great dad" thing and I truly appreciate the kind words.  They get me through some tough days.  But I have a perspective on Father's Day that only I can have.  I'm not unique.  We all have situations that people think they understand but they are just unable because it is impossible to fully see someone else's perspective.

I'm sure I could find numerous examples of me losing my patience with other people because I think I understand their perspective when I really don't.  I'm sure we've all been guilty at one time or another.

So what's the point?  The point is this.  Sometimes we (ahem... I) need to put my pride aside and admit that I just don't understand someone else's perspective.  I haven't walked in their shoes.  I haven't felt their pain.  I haven't seen the things that they've seen.  When we're willing to do that, we are able to learn about others in a way that is otherwise impossible.

What if today, you pretended that you've never spoken to your wife, your brother, your mom or your step-dad before?  What if you listened to them with fresh ears?  What could you learn about them today that you should have been listening to for years?  What could you learn about yourself?  What would happen if you started over?