Have you seen the movie Sliding Doors? I often think how things might have been totally different if just one small thing had or hadn’t happened.
It happens with words, too. A passing comment at just the right or wrong time…
I know it’s not what they said that created the dramatic shift, of course. It’s what I SAW around what they said that matters.
Nonetheless, here’s a 10 things sampling from my life…
1. “Give Chelle half a piece of cake. She doesn’t need a whole one.” I was about 9 years old and I think it might have even been my own birthday.
2. “You can’t be a hairdresser, you have to do something with your brain.” When I was a teenager, i loved anything hair related – until it was suggested that a creative job wasn't for me.
3. “Quit walking so loud.” I was just walking my normal walk – it was “too much.”
4. “She is NOT 12 years old!” From an adult I wanted to impress. I felt mature and smart and decided to keep doing more of that.
5. “You're a really good writer. This paper could present at a conference.” To that point I had no idea that I could be really successful academically.
6. “Why do you think you get to do it different than everybody else?” From a former partner. All I could reply with was, “Why DON’T you?”
7. “You’ve never talked negatively about your body. I think it made a big difference in how we think about our bodies and I’m grateful for it.” From one of my daughters. I made this conscious choice when they were babies and it wasn’t easy given our culture and my upbringing.
8. “You don’t have to weigh yourself, ever.” Talk about liberation.
9. “The sky’s the limit with you, Michelle. You can do anything you want. Tell me how I can support you.” In a performance review from a boss who didn’t dish out compliments often.
10. “I try to say “yes” as often as I can.” From my oldest brother about how he created such an awesome relationship with his son.