Saturday, September 16, 2006

Positive Living 5

Positive Living - Humility
In this world of titles people are placed in superior and inferior relationships: parent - child, teacher - pupil, professor - student, manager - employee, officer - secretary. Any word or comment that suggests that I am “smarter than” or “better than” brings negative feelings. Even when words are not said people feel inferior because they know the position they represent. In the workplace a person is given the position of supervisor or manager which suggests a position of superiority. The distance and the feelings in these relationships can be reduced by using soft tones and friendly words. Requests and suggestions replace the manner of giving orders or making demands. In teaching or training an employee in their tasks and responsibilities the learner is always in an inferior position. The good teacher realizes that it is not pleasant to be in an inferior position and will make an effort to overcome this, knowing that people respond better in fulfilling their responsibilities when they are treated like equals. They work more effectively in this kind of relationship. Parents because of their age, size, and experiences are put in a superior position to children. Getting children to perform their responsibilities or behave properly involves the authority position. Bossing brings negative feelings and may well engender resistance. When a parent becomes a playmate to a child this is a position of equality and reduces the feeling of superiority. Talking with them when they do most of the talking also reduces the feeling of inferiority. Children control their misbehavior and perform their chores better in a non-boss approach. When something important needs to be said, the parent would do well to bend down to the height of the child which makes their relationship more equal. In dealing with teens the authority method is resented. Influencing their decisions must come from a friendly discussion. There needs to be a two way exchange characteristic of friends. Parents would do well to be more “ears” than mouth. Efforts to promote equality in relationships avoids friction and engenders positive feelings.
Treating others as equals brings surprising results.


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