Confessions of an Unintentional Domestic Goddess

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Skin a Cat?

on April 12, 2013

Do you remember the phrase ‘There are many ways can you skin a cat”? Ok, I’m not skinning any animals, so don’t go all PETA on me, but it’s an analogy to say there are many different ways of doing things, right? Sort of like using a roadmap. If you’re taking a road trip, you plan it out with a map, right? Or mapquest or Google Maps. And when you do, you see multiple routes to your destination (most likely). Some are shorter, others longer, maybe scenic or historic. But there are many ways of reaching the same location, none of them wrong, right?

So why is it, when someone does something differently than we might, or differently than we think they should, we think it’s wrong? Why would we ever think we know better than they do? Yes, we may have different experiences, and want to offer advice as to what happened when we traveled that route. But what we did, or would do, is not necessarily better or the right way of doing things. Even if you are an expert on the subject, there are always more ways of doing something.

And that’s all fine, fine, just fine. I offer that type of information to my children daily. It usually starts out as,
‘Hey mom, I want to blah blah blabbity blah’.
Or ‘I did this and this and that today at school.’
‘Ok, that sounds great, but here’s what happened when I did that….’
And I share with them my experience so they understand that if they write a note that says something less than complimentary about a classmate, it could very well make it back to the person it’s written about, for example. You get my drift. Or ‘when I did that, this happened, what if you try it another way?” And they can make their own decisions from that, because clearly, I can’t control what they do, all I can do is share what happened to me when I did it and hope that they don’t make the same mistake if it was a negative experience.

Don’t condemn someone based on these things, as being inferior or ‘wrong’, because it’s not for us to decide, really, is it? My best friend has been attending a financial freedom kind of class. She wants to achieve some goals for herself and her son. In the class this week, she shared with me that the class instructor (who teaches someone else’s method & material) told her that what she was doing was wrong. Flat out. Not that it was a different path to the same location, but plain wrong. He was trying to force her into a cookie-cutter mold that the developer of this method has created, and in so doing, he dashed her hopes and made it sound as if she would never achieve her goal, simply because she was taking a different route. He refused to accept the thought that she could reach her goal without applying these strict principles in an absolute manner, as if this way was the only way to get where she wants to go. Rather than trying to help her use their method in a way that would work for her, he essentially shut her down. She was very distraught and upset about this, who wouldn’t be?

Please please please, before telling someone what they’re doing is ‘wrong’, think about what you’re saying and do this: DON’T, because you do not know for a fact that it is wrong. You may not agree with it, and it may not be what you’d do in the situation, and please HEAR ME: that does NOT make it wrong. Don’t be the one who makes someone feel badly, just because it’s not what you’d do. Don’t be that person.

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