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Tuesday, April 28

Candace Exposed: My Greatest Flaw

I’m a young, fairly accomplished, self sufficient sista. I’m very driven, very motivated and very blessed. I made good choices early that resulted in homeownership at the age of 24 and entrepreneurship at 26. I have a strong relationship with God and feel that I’m on the correct path to fulfill my purpose. Because of all this, many of my friends turn to me for inspiration, encouragement and advice.

I recently discovered, however, that the inspiration, encouragement and advice I gave was not all well-received. And I felt exposed when I found out why.

To me, life is simple. Everything happens for a reason, so acceptance of what is is vital. In every obstacle, there is an opportunity for growth. Investing time in being upset, frustrated, angry or defeated is counterproductive. God gives us strengths to help us fulfill our purpose and a testimony to use so that others can see Him in us. In every question, guidance from God for the answer is key.

That’s pretty much how I live my life, which leads me to finding the good in everything and rarely becoming stressed or frustrated about anything.

So, the inspiration, encouragement and advice I give is based on that. And up until recently, it was difficult for me to understand why other people had complications in using these ideals to live their lives. Afterall, it was these principles that provided a roadmap that led me to my accomplishments. And all I wanted was for other people to understand these principles and use them. Insert problem here.

When talking to some of my friends, I gave little regard to their upbringings, past experiences and struggles, all of which helped shape them into their present selves. I only spoke from my experiences, which in many cases, were completely different from theirs. So, when a few of my friends had a hard time accepting some of the things I was saying, I unconsciously became preachy. And as you can imagine, this led to arguments, then resistance, then prolonged periods of silence between us. But I still felt like I was right (which might be the Virgo in me).

Much later, however, a candid conversation with one of my friends exposed me and I learned of my greatest flaw: projection. I project myself onto others.

It’s perfectly fine for me to live my life by the principles outlined above, but I can’t expect everyone else to do it in the exact same way. God gives each of us different experiences, different paths, different journeys, different strengths and different obstacles to shape and use us differently. So, He also, likely, talks to us differently. I learned that I try to project my formula for living and success onto others, when life, in fact, has no formula.

This doesn’t mean that I can’t continue to use my adopted principles to inspire, encourage and advise. It just means that I have to meet people where they are without expecting them to become a carbon copy of me.

What a lesson! So, do you know what your biggest flaw is?


Ebony said...

I must admit that was the cause for my lack of communication. But you know, we all do it unknowingly. By the way I'm still awaiting your visit :)

Candace Avont said...

girl, you should have said something instead of not communicating.

Ebony said...

Yeah I know...