The Second Third, Week 28: Benefit of the Doubt

I work in building full of highly educated and opinionated people, in a large and complex organization with constituents, intense competition for resources, and exhausting internal and external politics. All of these things are magnified in times of stress and rapid change — an historic economic downturn or transition in leadership, for example — and since my place of employment has both of those underway, everyone is a little fried.

It’s easy to be worn down by the relentless progress and pace of things, to be stretched thin by the pressure to move mountains in minutes, and to find yourself tripping on raw nerves. At times like these — and throughout my Second Third — I hope to be more conscious about giving the people around me the benefit of the doubt. Most of my colleagues, friends, and family would never go out of their way to cause me difficulty, pain, or offense. Most of them have good intentions and are doing the best they can with the hand they’ve been dealt. So when I’m tempted to be irritated and angry, I’m gonna do my best to hold my tongue and remember that their world is tilted and spinning, too.

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