What To Make Of Our Inconsistencies

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Brian Kight

Simplicity wins, as we frequently remind ourselves here, but much of what we navigate is in fact complex. What we aim to do is systematically apply simple skills to execute in complex environments.

The most complex dynamic in the world is human behavior. As much time as we spend dealing with other people’s behavior, it’s our own behavior dynamics that deserve our devoted attention. Applying cause and effect, when we are self-aware, self-disciplined, and self-confident in our own behavior, we interact better with any type of behavior we experience from other people. Do you see that flow of connection? Said simply, when you get better, everything you touch has a chance to get better, including other people.

Let’s take a closer look at the complexity of our own behavior.

  • How often do you make irrational decisions? But are you an intelligent person?
  • How often do you say unkind things about people? But are you a kind person?
  • How often do you hide the truth? But are you an honest person?
  • How often do you blame? But are you a responsible person?
  • How often do you give in to peer pressure? But are you a mature person?

Resist any inner voice that wants to discredit these questions because they might be uncomfortable. Resist any inner voice that wants to be judgmental for any of your personal answers.

Instead, take a few long deep breaths to appreciate that you, like everyone else, are complex. You’re not just one thing. You’re not the same set of behaviors in every environment, every scenario, every context, in every interaction. This self-awareness will hopefully increase the empathy you give yourself and others for the flaws we discover in our complex nature. They aren’t hard to find. Neither are inconsistencies. We all have plenty of both.

It’s hard to improve if we don’t see clearly and acknowledge honestly. It’s even harder if we cloud the picture by judging ourselves and others without empathy.

Everything is training for something. Do the work.

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