Our lunch conversation turned unexpectedly.
“What do you think of _______?”
If I did not have the question in front of me I could have talked for a long time about abilities, strengths, and examples of both. In this moment, I was in front of someone who could see as well as hear my response. I had no idea how to answer the question accurately. If I stuck to my viewpoint of a few years ago, the answer was simple. If I include more recent experience, the answer was different. If I choose to include my insights and evaluation, the answer changed again.
My conversation with this recruiter has always been candid. I took the risk of keeping it that way.
“As you know, people come in different colors, shapes, and sizes. Depending on how well you know her or him, the perspective one has changes. In this case, I know the individual very well. There are a lot of strengths and positives. There are also areas that s/he could work to improve. Then there are their weaknesses.”
As I talked through the different areas I found myself hesitating to share the weaknesses. In the end, I knew that the story was not complete without the final segment. “Without dwelling it too long, I am reminded that everyone has a blind spot. In this case, ‘they hide behind ordinary people, then pounce on their victims.’” (Psalm 10.8)
The conversation has stayed with me for some time. I have seen glimpses of myself in the mirror that reminds me that there are parts of “me” that I strongly dislike. I would be a better person if these weaknesses were not part of who and what I am. I know that they are at the moment.
The question, then and now, is what I should do with my knowledge. While I am unsure of what I should do outside, I do know that accepting and dealing with myself is a positive step. I doubt I will get everything in one pass, but I can start the process.