Wednesday, October 11, 2006

An interesting thought..

As much as I'd like to take credit for "original" thoughts that cross my blog, every once in a while something comes in an email that intrigues me, and gives me pause...Such was the case yesterday. Perhaps you can identify with this, and maybe give some feed back.

First, however, know that I am a friend guy -- meaning that I place a pretty high priority on my friends, and they can count on me in a pinch. It has been my experience over the years, however, that many of my friends don't place the same priority on our friendship that I do, and given similar circumstances will not go the lengths for me that I would typically go for them. That trend, over time, has led me to say that I am a better friend to most people, than they are to me.

Now, lets look at this in a couple of ways. Perhaps I have a greater capacity or capability to give than some; perhaps they don't have the time, or the flexibility that I do, so they can't give back in the same measure. Should I expect them to? If I'm giving out of friendship, does it matter if they give back equally? Am I giving to get back ? or because I feel like giving? Interesting query.

For another view, if I read that statement -- "I am a better friend to most people..." --
written by anyone other than myself (because I'm biased, of course), it would be an easy leap for me to propose that we might be dealing with a martyr type personality: "Look, at what I give for you... I give and give and give, and you just don't give back,'re a taker and I'm a victim." But I reeeeeeally hope that category doesn't describe me!

Here is the statement that arrived in my email yesterday: "Don't make anyone a priority, who considers you an option !"

This is a very powerful statement and, undoubtedly, we've all placed people in a priority status at one time or another... who just didn't seem to treat us with the same priority. And in the short term it isn't necessarily a problem, but in the LONG term... it can become quite a stress point.

So, I invite your comments on this. Tell me what you think, how you feel about it, what it means to you. Keep it positive ! Okay? But I'm interested in feed back.

Have an awesome day!

Saturday, October 07, 2006

I Talk Too Much !

Yeah, I said it. And I know that some of you are reading this saying..."Wow; it took him long enough to figure THAT out!" But, it's true. I, Kelvin P Ringold, Sr, sometimes talks too much. Every once in a while, someone asks me a question -- and there's a lot of people asking me questions these days -- and I am under the sometimes mistaken impression that they actually want an answers! Oops!

I have a philosophy: NEVER ask a question you're not prepared to hear the answer to -- no matter what the answer is. Unfortunately, I forget that not everyone is like me :-).

I was in JC Penney's the other day, to buy some new shoes. I'd picked out a couple of pairs, and asked her what she thought -- after all, she's an expert at this right? Well, she hemmed and hawed and said, well... "It's a nice shoe, but.. well... I can't really say how comfortable they are for you..." etc, etc... and she wouldn't give me her honest thoughts. I finally decided, "Okay, I like this shoe; I'll take it..." then she said, "I LOVE that shoe! It's one of my favorites." I asked why she didn't say something when I asked. She said that a lot of people get upset when she answers their question and it wasn't what they wanted to hear. I said, no worries ; *I* am the type of person... that when I ask a question I *want* to hear the answer! Okay ?" . . . and went on to the next pair of shoes I liked.

I put them on, stood up, looked at them in the little floor mirror, and asked her, "Whadya think?" She looked at me and smiled kinda shyly and asked, "you weren't planning on wearing those OUT anywhere, were you? It's a nice outdoor shoe... like walking and hiking and gardening. My family has several pair. Were you actually planning on wearing those with, like, good clothes?" And I cracked up ! I said, "how about like to a bar?" She said, "what kinda bars do you go to?..." then repeated that "outdoor / walking / gardening" response one more time... and all the while I'm chuckling. Then she said, "Well you said you wanted my opinion..." and I laughed and said "...Absolutely, and thank you. I've got some gardening I wanted to do anyway." We had a good laugh, she got a good sale and I got 15% off my purchase for opening a Penney's charge account!

But that's me! I've come to believe that my purpose in life is to provide PERSPECTIVE to people. One of my favorite passages in
Illusions: The Adventures of a Reluctant Messiah (gosh WHY does he keep mentioning that book?!") says, "Perspective. Use it or lose it." I help take your excuses away, and to be honest, I believe that's why most people (who really know me) ask me things. It's why *I* ask questions of those I trust. My other favorite passage from Illusions (there he goes again!) is, "we teach best what we most need to learn." It is very rare, my friends, that in discussing your question, I don't discover -- or rediscover -- an answer that is pertinent in my own life.

So ask away! I've always got more leaning to do, and we can take our joint excuses away together. Right?

In the meantime, I'm going to go take my new shoes for a walk outdoors, around the garden, and maybe start re-reading Illusions again... Ahhhhh. Happy Saturday!

Have an awesome day.


P.S. If you haven't been there lately, there's a cute story on the home page of Ringold.NET. If you get bored, check it out.