How well do you know yourself? Most times, when folks err and you see the deluge of criticisms that follow afterwards, it makes you wonder how the “criticizers” would act given in the same situation – you never know. Which is why most times, I consciously stay away from bandwagon criticisms. I do that because it is fun to criticize and gloat how you would act, but behind closed doors, away from the eyes of the glaring public, in our most frail moments, NO ONE CAN PREDICT HOW ONE WOULD ACT.
I found this out first hand recently. During lunch with a colleague, I talked about a previous situation which needed resolving with my employer. I wanted some clarity concerning if my time with the company would be extended. At that point, I was receiving mixed signals as to my status and it was driving me nuts. My friend explained that they (meaning the company) didn’t want me to know my status till the last moment. Which was probably to help keep me motivated and prevent me from “tanking my season”. I disagreed with him on this as I said regardless of their decision, my productivity would not change. I explained that uncertainty affected my productivity which would dramatically increase if I knew my status as soon as possible (this should enable me have a head start with having something else lined-up). When I said this, I truly believed in myself. I truly believed that I should be “professional” enough to deliver even if my time with the organization were to end. He laughed.
Anyways, fast forward a couple of days, I got to find out that my time was to end in a couple of weeks. This was a shock to me – I had busted my behind to deliver on all tasks and still, my time was to end. Anyways, psychologically, I shut down. The drive to own tasks and deliver in record time dissipated. Looking back on this, I was surprised with how I reacted. I had expected something different but human nature kicked in. Human nature reminded me about one thing……we are humans…..and our actions cannot be completely predicted in its entirety, because if it did, we would lose that element that defines our “human-ness” ……unpredictability.