Last week, I started writing and brainstorming relationship mistakes and realized that I’ve made so many more mistakes than just four. Therefore, I feel it is appropriate to share with you four more relationship mistakes that make me look dumb.
You can read about the previous 4 relationship mistakes for some background.
1. Pointing out someone’s mistake in public.
No one likes to be made a fool, and certainly not in public. If you discover that someone you know made a mistake, you need to ask yourself a couple questions:
Does it really matter? If it doesn’t matter, don’t bring it up, ever.
If it does matter, examine your motives for telling this person about their mistake. Is it to help them or is it to make yourself look superior?
Once you determine that it does matter and you have the right motivation, pull him or her aside to and let them know about their mistake in private. If you are in the middle of a conversation with a group of people, wait until the conversation is done to let them know. If you don’t, not only do you look dumb, but some might think you are a jerk.
2. Spacing out.
There have been many conversations that my mind began to wander and I realized that I was hearing the person, but not really listening. Then they ask me a question and wait for me to respond. That’s where I’m busted. I ask them to repeat the question, but the damage is done. They know I was spacing out. I looked dumb. Focus on the person you are talking to and really listen.
3. Always bring the conversation back to myself.
So many people do this. It’s shocking. Until I analyzed my own behavior and realized that I do this all the time! For those that I have done this to, I’m sorry.
If there is one topic that we are experts on, it is ourselves. Therefore, it is natural for us to make the conversation about us. However, it makes me look dumb. People automatically think that I am conceited and roll their eyes.
It is important for me to remember that my ministry is not about me. If anything, I should always turn the conversation to God.
4. Bring up a topic in public that was supposed to stay private.
I find this one more challenging as I advance in experience in ministry. I try to be transparent and honest with everyone, but there are always sensitive situations that I have knowledge of that should stay private.
When I share something publicly that is supposed to be private, it always comes back to hurt me in the end. Not only do I look dumb, but people get rightfully upset with me for breaking confidence.
Question: Which of these mistakes have you committed? What happened?
Special thanks to Steve Do who helped me develop some of these ideas and got the creative juices flowing.