Yesterday we talked about training people on what to expect from us. Part 2 is how we train ourselves on how to act or behave in certain situations and/or with certain people.
Are there people and places that you know going in that you are going to be expected to talk about [blank]?
Are there people and places that you know going in that you are going to be expected to act like [blank]?
The office group that always talks about everyone else in the office—interchanged with whomever is not in the circle that day?
The group of guys in the hallway at church that discuss the things that ought to be addressed with the church leaders? (Same conversation next week, different topics.)
The neighbor guy who is going to talk sports or weather, or maybe switch it up and talk weather, then sports?
These predictable, rarely changing scenes often make us actors that walk in knowing the role we’ll be playing. We train ourselves how to respond, how to act, and even how to listen—or not. There can even be situations where we act completely different and talk in a way we don’t anywhere else. If we are in many different environments, it can become much like a chameleon, changing personas like the lizard changes colors. Fit to survive or stick out and die.
So, it’s a good practice to take a few minutes and think about the circles you tend to stand in week in and week out. Is there anywhere you’ve been trained to act like someone you’re not? Is there anywhere you’re uncomfortable every single time you’re there?
Sometimes, it’s just time to not stand in that group any more. But most often, it’s just an opportunity to decide you’re going to be you, regardless of what happens or how someone responds. After all, God made us to be unique and if it’s good enough for Him, it should be good enough for everyone else.
This only have I found: God created mankind upright, but they have gone in search of many schemes.” —Ecclesiastes 7:29 NIV