Yesterday, Price Considerate shared that in a moment of candor one of his mentees disclosed he was first put off by PC, in part because that day PC’s shoes didn’t match his pants. PC explained to him that sometimes he doesn’t pay as much attention to those details as he should, but he didn’t get defensive. He said it launched an insightful discussion into the types of things about which his mentee was judgmental. He said, “I was clear my mentee’s comment wasn’t really about me, but about him.”
Yes, it was. Anytime we are triggered by something another does, it is about us. The mentee’s comment created an opening to explore why he was judgmental about something as minor as a clothing mismatch.
Whenever I’m reminded of an insight generator, I like to see how it applies to me. After all, it is all about me! (Just as these things are about you, too, if you care to look.) I asked myself what dates I’d rejected because of minor things, perhaps not shoe/pants mismatches, but things like table manners, lack of chivalry, unconscious comments. Was I, like the mentee, making more of these hiccups than I should? Did I reject some good guys because of seemingly small things?
My justification is that even minor indiscretions are indicative of core behavior and beliefs. If a man doesn’t call when he says he will and has no viable excuse, I declare him inconsiderate. If he doesn’t help with my coat, he’s unconscious of manners. If he wears wrinkled clothing on dates, he doesn’t have pride in his appearance. The list goes on.
On the other end of the spectrum of responses to these behaviors is just to notice and accept them without judgment. I don’t live on that end of the continuum very much. Of course, it is easier to accept a man’s idiosyncrasies if you know you’re not interested in a long term relationship with him — or if you aren’t married to him!
The challenge comes when our rationale for rejecting him is clearly so “right.” Of course you feel justified not accepting a second date since he didn’t bother to iron his shirt to make a good impression on you. But some women wouldn’t even notice. And ironing is a fixable issue and you may be rejecting a charming, loving, affectionate, loyal man over an issue that a laundry service could easily solve. This is about you because of a notion that the man you want to be with would have the good sense to wear ironed clothes, even though you overlook other stellar qualities to focus on a sub-par superficial one.
In your dating adventures, what behaviors from your dates has triggered something that allowed you to look deeper into your motivations, values and behaviors?
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