Have you ever stopped to wonder who is with you when you are at your best during the day? Is it your immediate family? Your coworkers? Your pet? Yourself? For many people, there are certain times during the day when they are feeling good and have the most clarity when dealing with any issue that comes up. It might be the same time every day (there are “early birds” who are very productive and joyful in the early morning, for instance), or it might depend on their activities (for example, there is a big chance for a good mood after a good yoga class, just saying…). I believe we all wish we could be at our best throughout our days, but is quite hard, so let’s assume there is at least one certain time in the day when you are at your best.
On the other day, I caught myself thinking about this. From my point of view and also from the perspective of the people I deal with. And then I extended the thought to people I know. Some people have no or very little interaction with their family/friends/pets/ before going to work, then spend the whole day inside an office, coming home in the evening being already exhausted. I know many people like that; I’ve been one of them… Years ago, I used to be a computer software developer for some corporation and still made time for many other things in my day (way too many, I came to realize eventually!). I used to leave home at 7AM and come back sometimes at 11PM! Obviously, I was already tired by then and would even avoid interaction with anyone. I’d say probably my lunchtime was my “best time of day”, when relaxing and talking to coworkers and friends would lift up my spirits for the rest of the afternoon work to get done. And since I have always liked to wake up early, I had time for some hobbies, such as learning German or exercising.
Many years later, I find myself really trying to be my best (the whole day, yes, but making sure I am really at the high end) especially when family comes home. Specifically when my kids come home from school. I know I should not be just up and running, but also open for interactions and ready to be a problem solver. Sometimes they come happy with good grades or some funny things that happened to them at school. But other times, they come upset, exhausted, frustrated or simply not feeling that great. And from experience, if I’m not non-judgmental or clear of expectations when they come, it will probably go downhill for me and for them. Being able to switch the focus to a positive smile of a problem is crucial.
It is understandable that some come home a bit frustrated from so many hours sitting at school or office, having to act in a contained way for so long. It is very similar what happens to adults and kids; not just in terms of being able to only see walls while sun is shining outside, but also having to comply with some crazy ideas from a boss, for instance. Those would throw almost anybody’s mood to the ground.
So, please take a moment now to think about you at your best. When does that usually happen – morning, lunch, or evening? Who is with you at that time? Now, another important question: who is currently priority for you in your life? Your family? Your boss? Your pet? Yourself?
Next, I will offer you a chance to put those two answers together: Are you with the people who matter the most to you when you are at your best? Would you like to be? Think about some changes you could make in your life to make that possible, and just watch the beneficial impact it will have for you and other people you interact with. Please do let me know if you try it.