Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Women Issues Speaker: Reconciling Your Private Life and Public Persona

Have you ever met someone who acts one way publicly, but is entirely different privately? When you are a celebrity (like Tiger Woods for example), the squeaky clean image is hard to uphold.

We all have our weaknesses, frailties and flaws. Yet people from the outside looking in often uphold and idealize celebrities and "special people" seeing only the glitter and glamor at social events.

I know one successful businessman who tells his girlfriend, "Everybody in life is like a pancake having two sides: a good side and a bad side."

When you are wealthy, everybody sees the "good side" ...or the side advantageous and agreeable to them... the fact that you are rich and have something they want.

However being rich isn't always all it is cracked up to be. As President Obama told Oprah at the White House during a 2009 Christmas interview, "Being the President, when it comes to gifts, I usually give better gifts than I receive."

Expectations on celebrities, the wealthy, clergy, parents and even mothers can be overwhelming for even the best of persons. Trying to continually live up to the expectations of others can be emotionally and physically exhausting.

Eventually at some point most check out of the game and prefer transparency, posturing themselves with more humility. Alternatively a few (to their own demise) seek to project a level and degree of personal perfection and put-togetherness as if to exalt themselves over everyone else.

This is what I most respect about President Obama, his humility and love for the American people he was elected to serve. Pres. Obama and Michelle rightly call the White House "the people's house" ...something I don't recall any other President beforehand ever doing - a new concept and paradigm for leaders in government.

Nevertheless even those who excel in certain professions have bad days. Athletes don't always eat and live healthy. Mothers aren't always loving, patient and nurturing.

Clergy sometimes cause as much conflict with the sermons they preach from the pulpit, as the counseling they provide in private makes peace to heal the divide.

Interior designers and domestic divas who publicly look so awe inspiring sometimes fail to care for their own homes, which if you were to visit unexpectedly might appear frightful.

Likewise businessmen sometimes make bad business decisions and lose a pile of money.

Yet failure is never final, nor is it a measure of your womanhood or manhood. However the way you respond to personal flaws, frailties and failure will help you determine the measure of your character.

What comes out of your mouth under pressure best reveals what is truly in your heart and needing to be purged and purified.

If you continually project yourself as entirely put-together and radiate an air of superiority, eventually when the day of exposure comes and you are found wanting, great will be the humiliation and judgment which you have brought upon your self.

Transparency and REALITY therefore is the order of the day. Hence the popularity of reality TV.

Everyday people relate better to reality than to perfection.

Therefore get off the personal pedestol you have created for and enthroned yourself upon to live transparently. Be real and open enough to share your personal struggles and testimony. After all, this is what has endeared millions to Oprah and made her billions of dollars.

People who are real and speak openly of their struggles make us feel normal and give us hope.

I was blessed to hear about President Obama and first lady Michelle Obama's early marital struggles during the first few years of matrimony. It makes me realize perfection is not the order of the day to be successful, just patience and persistence.

Therefore stop trying to put on an outward show and be something you are not. Die to your feelings of self-importance and invest in others realizing it is when you are being a blessing and helping others that you stand the tallest and discover your purpose.

Die to "I" and live for the good and betterment of others. As you do you shall be a great blessing and simultaneously personally benefit.

Be internally and outwardly congruent both in your private and personal life so you don't have to juggle the Dr. Jekel and Mr. Hyde personas and continually wonder who you shall be today. Be true to yourself and the values you hold dear.

Love and honor those closest to you before you try to speak to and shape your world. Respect and service begins on the homefront with those in closest proximity to you, who best know you and all of your imperfections.

They who know you best will often rub you the wrong way first, but in so doing (if you will embrace it) awaken you to a greater level of self-awareness and opportunities for further personal growth.

By humility and the fear of the Lord are riches, honor and life (Proverbs 22:4).

Many in America seek riches only to later be told on publicly by those who intimately know them privately. The end result is they have riches but with them are empty and without honor because they forgot to build a strong foundation.

So before you climb the ladder of success, it behooves you to make sure your ladder is leaning upon the right building. - worldwide speaker, life coach and author


No comments: