What’s Reality?

I attempted writing this blog entry earlier today but didn’t get anywhere.  So I did what anyone else would do… I took a nap.  It didn’t help.   

What do you do when you have something to do and energy and inspiration eludes you?  I would like to say that I look directly into the face of the task at hand and something noble rises up from inside and I wrestle that bad boy to the mat.

Unfortunately my life doesn’t have that Hollywoodish glamour or possess the savoir-faire that other people seem to have.  For whatever reason I really struggle with stuff I must do. 

But maybe that’s the problem.  When we look at other people, we automatically attribute qualities or intentions based on what we believe from what we see.  Good or bad.

Here’s the weird thing.  Someone might observe me and admire or possibly envy the apparent ease with which I write the blog.  They may be telling themselves they could never do that because they don’t have the talent.

I have been called a lot of things in my life but savoir-faire is not one. 

Have you ever seen someone in a situation and wonder why in the world they cannot see what they are doing or how they are coming across?  It amazes me when I see people do things that are so obvious. 

Clue Phone:  Maybe we do the same thing. 


Now that we have been hanging out for a while together I have a confession.  I hope this sudden burst of personal revelation doesn’t disillusion you.

I am a Reality Show junkie.  Yep, it’s true. 

I watch American Idol, Amazing Race and… Survivor.  And no, I do not watch the Bachelor or the Biggest Loser. 

To feed the cultural and intellectual part of me I watch Antiques Roadshow.   And in case your wondering, yes, Antiques Roadshow is a REALITY SHOW.  You can’t pretend it’s not just because it’s on PBS.  So if you watch Antiques Roadshow… you watch reality TV.

Now if I want to get real earthy I will watch the hidden jewels of reality TV … Pawn Stars and American Pickers.  Good TV.   By the way, these two shows can’t be too bad because they are on the History Channel.

Now you may be wondering why I bring up reality TV in regards to writing this blog entry.   People on reality TV have a camera on them all the time and we view the behavior. 

The same is true about us only without the camera.  Every day people are interpreting our behaviors and then acting on what they believe. 

Most likely most of the time people interpret the actions accurately and act accordingly.  But I also know that many times people, self included, misinterpret the actions of others and handle things poorly.

“We measure other people by their actions and we measure ourselves by our intentions.”

- Stephen Covey


My wife and I have talked about the fact that life experience is teaching us that many people are much more insecure than we would have ever guessed.  For example, somebody does something that we interpret as arrogant when in reality it was insecurity.

With life experience one learns that things aren’t as simple or one dimensional as one thinks. 

Personally, I believe it is my responsibility to understand how I come across to others.  It’s important to know because there are subtle things we all do that sends messages to others in ways that can be totally misinterpreted. 

It is these small subtle nuances and behaviors that can create negative patterns in the way people treat us. 

Now this is where it gets messy.  You can only identify and change these behaviors if we ask and allow people to give us feedback and… AND… we be willing to listen.

The second is harder than the first because when people start to point out things we (I) tend to get pretty defensive.

Since we are not part of a reality TV show we don’t have a camera following us around.  So it’s difficult to see ourselves as others see us.  We need the help of others.

Well, I guess I better wrap this blog entry up because The Amazing Race is about to start.

See you Thursday.

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