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It takes one to know one!

When I was growing up and you would get teased by someone, the response was "it takes one to know one and you're the one I know".

It implied that whatever negative you were saying about me that you only see that because it must be true about you.

Out of the mouths of babes.

No truer words could ever be spoken. For you to see something in someone else there must be something in you to give you a frame of reference for that thing. So either you are behaving in that manner now or you did at one point. Either way, this is beyond compassion; rather it is empathy.

Not too long ago I had several experiences in one day that brought this into sharp relief and it made me question myself.

A waitress placed the bill on the table as opposed to in my hand... although I had my hand out.

A copier repair technician failed to appear and then was indignant when I demanded my money back.

My car repair service technician left the window down during the rain so when I went to get in my car it was wet.

All small things in the Grand scheme of things but still inconsiderate. Unprofessional. Lackadaisical.

But it takes one to know once.

And so I looked at myself and the way that I conduct my business and I asked myself, how was I treating my clients that I could recognize these qualities in others?

And then I looked at my friends and the way I treat them, and asked myself, was I being the friend to them that I wanted them to be to me?

Then I looked at how I interacted with my family and I had to take a deep breath before I asked the big question, was I behaving in a manner that honored the love, dedication, sacrifice, and faith my parents had shown me?

Hmmm... Well now...

Although I could not put my hand on one particular client, I know that there is always room for improvement. That there's always something else that can be done to add more value. And there was always someone to say thank you to.

And although I couldn't think of any particular friend I'd slighted *lately* (because we all do it sometimes by not calling back when we say we will, not showing up when we could, and not being fully present when we know we should - you know "your body's here with me but your mind is on the other side of town..."). Im'ma leave that right there!

Yet I could think of times that my family was jilted in my quest for success. Missed girl scout outings, graduations, girls day out, late anniversary dinners, and last minute birthday gifting that looked last minute and janky come to mind. Ashamedly, vividly to mind.

So I implemented a new way of getting things in earlier rather than just on time. I respond/confirm in two ways rather than one to my clients. And I say thank you often so that people in my life know I appreciate them.

I choose to be known as one who lives in excellence. (Not perfection - they'll always be room for improvement.) Because I want to take that and to know that, and be the person who I know... and love... and appreciate... and enjoy - about me.

Lynita Mitchell-Blackwell


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