Being told negative things about oneself is never easy to hear. It’s not easy to have someone line out what character flaws you have or areas that are clearly battle zones for you.
It’s tough to hear not only because usually (and I say this with the full knowledge that lots of people are clueless about their flaws) I am pretty aware of the chinks in my armor but also because it displays that someone ELSE is aware of my dents and dings, as well.
Hearing that I can be harsh with my words isn’t exactly exposing some unknown secret. I’ve been opinionated and an extrovert my whole life…that combination will get ANYONE into trouble. Add a dash of anxiety here, insecurity there, and a splash of self-loathing and it’s a recipe for hurtful words. I really dislike that about myself and have been consciously working on it over the years. Some years are better than others, I won’t lie.
The part that makes it hard to hear is when it comes from someone who is really nice, which I am naturally skeptical of due to the difficulty I have being nice sometimes. It instantly makes me feel judged therefore defensive. I want to then retaliate by pointing out THEIR dents and chinks in their armor. What a horrible response to have.
This just happened and my response was to physically back away. It’s fresh in my mind. I don’t want to be prickly. I don’t want to be instantly on the defensive when I’m given [true] feedback about myself. How do I set a block in my mind to not instantly react? I have to work on this…I’ve actually been working on it…but how do I make it an every time thing?
There is a verse in the bible that say, “…be quick to hear, slow to speak and slow to anger; for the anger of man does not achieve the righteousness of God.” James 1:19,20 NASB
So dear James, HOW many times do I have to focus on this before it becomes second nature? I want to be calm, mellow, sweet, only say positive and kind things to everyone. I want to do that yet I fail on a daily basis. While I’m certain I am not the only on who battles this, it just seems so much easier for other people.
Lord, calm my heart. Fill me with the truth of Your love and peace. Please let that overflow out of me and onto others. Cover my words with Your grace. Amen