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Monday, August 16, 2010

Politically Correct vs. Brutally Honest

Today I had to dress-up for work. Essentially, that means rather than business casual it was business professional. I wore a skirt, nylons and even a jacket...and it’s August!!!

I didn’t think it was a huge departure from how I normally dress for work until this comment from my 8 year-old this morning.

Lauren: Wow Mom, you look like an office lady today.

Me:
Well, that’s good because I work in an office. How do I usually look?

Lauren:
Not like that.

If you need an ego boost, don’t look to your kids. It’s not that they are trying to keep you grounded...they just haven’t developed that "politically correct" filter that keeps us out of trouble as adults.

And aren’t we glad. As working professionals, we need someone to be brutally honest and give it to us straight.

I had a CEO of a company tell me once that only her teenage kids truly tell her "how it is" when it comes to her presentation style. Of course, I agreed. (And not just because that was the politically correct thing to do.)

Giving feedback to co-workers can be such a tricky thing at the office. We want to appear smart, yet thoughtful; well-informed, yet open to ideas.

Is that how it is at home around the kitchen table with kids? Not at my house!

I can’t recall my kids ever saying: "Mom, I really appreciate the fact that you’re helping us eat healthier with this big bowl of steamed broccoli. And it’s obvious that you spent a lot of time preparing this amazing dinner. However, I need some time to consider the broccoli option. Can I think it over and get back to you tomorrow?"

A more likely scenario at our house: "Gross! I hate broccoli! Don’t get it near me or I’ll gag. Did you really think I'd want to eat that awful stuff?"

I love my kids. They keep me humble. My girls let me know how I can be a better person without any concern for political correctness. And if their brutal honesty hurts my feelings, then they are getting a big bowl of steamed broccoli for dinner!

3 comments:

ajwhet10 said...

Haha! Love this because it's so right on. In fact, if there is a notch below brutal honesty (maybe downright cruelty?) kids will be sure to find that place to share their version of how parents can improve. We just have to take it with a grain of salt ... and a stalk of steamed broccoli.

Elissa said...

On the other hand...when my daughter says something positive...I know that it is true, uncensored and straight from the heart...

The reverse is true, but of course...!

Armed US Citizen said...

Great post, and it hits the nail right on the head! And I do not like it just so I am politically correct! lol

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