Opening Doors with Kim

Kim Ades of Opening Doors lets you in on her frame of mind.

Friday, October 27, 2006

The little black man

I was at a conference in California last week. I came across a little black man and we started chatting. I was describing an element of my career that caused frustration for me - I suppose I was animated in the way that I spoke - and he asked me what I was so mad about. I didn't think I was mad. I certainly didn't feel mad. But when he asked me what I was mad about, I started to get mad. I got mad at the thought that someone else thought that I might be mad. Because in my mind, mad is not good. Neither is angry, vengeful, hateful or bitter. Those emotions are scary to me. Those are emotions for people who are unbalanced and temperamental. I walked away from the conversation confused and concerned. If he thought I was mad - maybe other people thought I was mad too. And that made me wonder if that's how I come across. I didn't want to be thought of as a mad person. I wanted to be thought of as kind and good and giving and loving. I had to find that guy and fix things.

I did find him and after I tried awkwardly to smooth things over, he gave me a hug. This little black man stood there and gave me a hug and told me that he could see that I was a very warm and loving person. How would he know? A few minutes earlier he thought I was mad. Well we agreed to sit and talk for a bit. We talked about being mad. He asked me why I thought it was such a bad thing to feel mad. He said that being mad was an indicator of something not being right for me and that I should honor the feeling rather than try to tuck it away. Interesting. Then he suggested that I should give myself a hug and say "I love me." I did it - but I have to say it was rather uncomfortable and felt pretty foreign. Also interesting.

Hard to be loving to the world when we are so ill at ease loving ourselves. Meeting the little black man was a big day for me.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

I've been there myself. Sometimes we can't always see ourselves the way the rest of the world sees us -- particularly if it's not how we want to see ourselves. Sometimes we need to take cues from our friends. Sometimes that's even harder though than seeing things in ourselves we don't want to acknowledge and so we ignore them -- or worse tell them they're wrong. So we have to turn to strangers to have it pointed it out to us. In the end I guess it's okay if the end result is the same and it brings out the best in us but, wouldn't it just be easier if we all listened to what those who are nearest us and know us best have to say? Seems kind of unnecessary to have to turn to strangers.

7:05 PM  

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