I wish I could blame the Time Magazine Person of the Year 2006, but the problem is older than Time putting YOU on the cover. The problem just seems to be getting larger. It’s awfully easy for folks to think that the universe begins and ends with them. You can pick out the folks I mean by the stars in their eyes and the ME in their conversations.
Nan S. Russell gives a model of this “universal human being.”
I realized Stan wasn’t listening. He didn’t care what I had to say; he was waiting for his turn to talk. And talk he did, monopolizing the table’s conversation with his back-patting soliloquy.
The truth is that we all get that way sometimes – firmly set at the center of our own galaxy. Been there. Done that. I suppose we all have. Looking back I wish a beautiful, black hole had been available.
Listen to this. It’s great idea . . . .because I had it. . . . No!
We need a black hole with a gravitational pull so powerful to counteract our all too human ability to over-value our uniqueness. The minute we think we’re stars, we’re not.
Stars are generous. They inspire us. They show up, except for bad weather and catastrophes. They don’t intrude. They aren’t rude. They don’t make the universe about any one of them.
A friend told me the problem in her work environment is that every team member thinks his or her part is most important. “No one seems willing to work as if all of the parts are needed to make the whole excellent.”
Hi. I don’t know you. Will you give me hours of your time and expertise for free? . . . No!
Another friend told me about a young designer, who recommended a web host for a project. When that web host performed disastrously, rather than helping to find a new web host, the designer threw a tantrum. The designer made the issue about herself. Rumor has that she’s still acting like a victim. A black hole would serve that behavior well.
I don’t have time for conversation. Just give me what I need. . . . No!
How do we get so busy that we forget the person on the other side of the conversation? Sometimes the other person isn’t a stranger. Sometimes it’s a child or a grandmother.
People and stars are made of the same cosmic stuff.
Maybe if we let a black hole suck up some of that busy, dark matter. We would see more starlight in the mirror, in each other, in the sky at night.
Liz Strauss writes about a universe of things at Successful-Blog.