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Seeing The Best In Things

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Who hasn't heard the word "potential" somewhere in a sentence with their own name? I use to hear it from teachers, at parent teacher interviews:
"She is doing great but easily distracted, I'm just not sure if she is working to her full potential"
...My full what?
For years I navigated my way through what that meant. To do one's best was always subjective to me.
Who determines what my best is? If there is a best that I am not aware of, then how do I become it? How does someone else decide what my potential is?
These questions were formed out of frustration (and maybe defiance) but they sat with me for years while I sorted it out.
Seeing the best is this month's issue of Living Large.

Recognizing The Best

When looking at the people we love it is only natural to put our energy into helping them grow within the areas they have talent or skill. It is easy to see what someone is capable of, and of course, we would want to show them encouragement! Where is the danger is this? Well "seeing the best" usually falls into one of two categories:

1-Seeing the best in others

When we see the best in others, what we are actually looking at is what we believe that person is capable of. (Or in some cases, who they could be if they followed a specific path.) Although this type of encouragement is always great when giving guidance to help someone over come a road black they have put in their path, it can also set a person up for a pass/fail scenario. The question will always stand, "Was it enough?"
Seeing the best in someone is not the same as helping them be their best.

2- Seeing the best of ourselves in others

This takes on a whole new direction. Often this type of encouragement happens when we recognize someone we love has the ability to do something we feel we could not do ourselves. Always with the best of intentions, of course, we try to steer them into that path. What we are actually doing is setting up a pass/fail scenario for ourselves as well as for that person. The question will stand with them "am I good enough?" and the question that will linger in the back of our minds "did they really do their best?"

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