I recognize my image of myself may be distorted by my own rose colored glasses. We always like to think the best of ourselves and hope that we act in the best way possible towards others. But let's face it, we're human. Or at least I am.
One of the places I work has quite a few personalities. And I mean stand up comedian sketch material to last for years.
Often, I can distance myself from them and from the craziness. I come in to do one thing. I have control over my hours, for the most part, of when I do it, although there are certain times when I have to be around others. And I've made some good friends amongst the characters, so often it is a place I can enjoy being.
I know that we're all human. And clearly, there are some days, when I just have to repeat this mantra. Accept people for who they are, with all their flaws, as I would want them to accept me.
But there's this one guy. I'll call him Bob.
He used to work sometimes with this guy Frank, who left us last spring, and I do think that Frank cared about him after all the years they spent together, but Bob couldn't win with Frank. Bob would make a seemingly innocuous comment - "that sheet of paper is white" and Frank would jump all over him. "No it's not. Can't you see those blue lines?" It didn't matter what Bob said, Frank would disagree.
When Frank was here, although I would find Bob occasionally annoying, mostly I felt pity on him for the way Frank treated him.
Until I became Frank. Eight months after his departure, I know I have become him. Bob just needs to walk in the room, and already I'm annoyed and on the defensive. Already I'm ready to pick a fight.
I don't know if I hide it well or not. Today he came into the room and said to me "I'm bored. Create some drama." And I'm like, if I create drama, I'm going to end up upsetting someone and making them storm out and slam the door, and we really don't need that. "Oooh.. a fight!" Bob responded excitedly, not clear, apparently, that I was referring to him. "Goodie! I'll sell tickets and then watch."
It took all my self restraint not to clue him in. Others in the office knew exactly what I was saying, and were doing their best to stifle their laughs.