Why do we blame ourselves so often when we fail?
As she brought the warm crumbly scone to her lips, her delicate eyes slowly lifted up to scrutinize each of her guests. Even though they were all dressed immaculately, none of them dared to move even a single finger in her presence.
“Well don’t just stare at me! Try one of these cucumber sandwiches I made!” scowled the host as she scrunched up her face in mild frustration.
But still, each guest sat as if they were petrified with fear. The light and delicate sandwiches were left untouched.
“Fine! If you don’t like my sandwiches, at least try the tea!” shrieked the girl as she angrily decanted the warm golden brew into each of her guests’ fragile tea cups.
An eternity of time seemed to passed by, and yet not a single sip of tea was taken. Before any of her guest could stand up in protest, the girl ruthlessly flipped the table over. All of the delicate plates and teacups crashed to the ground. Tea splattered across the floral Victorian wallpaper. And shrapnel pieces of pastries were plastered across all of her shocked and horrified guests.
As the distraught girl burst out of the room and buried her face in her mother’s lap, she cried uncontrollably.
“Florence, my dear, what seems to be upsetting you?” cooed her mother as she tenderly patted her daughter on the back.
“All my guests hate my tea party! None of them wanted to try the sandwiches or tea I made. I am a terrible host and I never want to do this again!” screamed the girl in a fit of fury.
Her mother shot up indignantly and stormed over to her daughter’s room. She was going to give her daughter’s guests a piece of her mind. But when she flung open the door, the only people she saw were dolls drenched in tea and covered in clotted cream.
Just like this little girl, many of us are too quick to jump to the conclusion that we are failures when we don’t see the results we were expecting. But we often forget that other people’s responses and reactions are totally out of our control. Instead of obsessing over unrealized outcomes, we should find contentment in appreciating that our portion of the interaction was done well.