Here we are! October 3rd marks 8 years of delivering CookieTexts. I tend to sit here at the keyboard around this time of year to reflect on the past 12 months.
I still love my job.
A highlight of the year was working at a Career Fair at John Tyler Elementary in Hampton in the Spring. I met the cutest little boy.
He asked me: “What do you like most about your job?”
I said: “Everyday, I get to help people be nice to other people.”
That’s my job in its most basic form, and I love it, but everything isn’t always so simple and every year of CookieText comes with some personal growth, too.
This year I’m learning that I need to focus all that connecting at work and to stop helping people be nice to other people in my personal life. I know, it sounds harsh, but hear me out…
For example: I typically might text my son’s Uncle to say something like, “Andrew is going to be a 4-H counselor!” in hopes that the Uncle would congratulate Andrew and make a big deal of it. Uncle would be in the loop, Andrew would be happy to be congratulated. It sounds nice right?
My child is 15 years old. If he’s going to have a relationship with his Uncle, one or the other of them needs to take the lead on that.
I think I lost a bit of myself in fostering relationships and connecting others. I tried to be the bridge between too many people and in doing so my role in all these people’s lives was murky. I’ve had to resort back to asking myself, “what is my intention?” when I’m intervening.
Most of the time when I asked myself that, my intention was to strengthen a connection or relationship between two people fully capable of sharing that information between themselves if they chose to. By doing that kind of stuff all the time I was trying to manufacture other’s relationships for them, and maybe worse, giving people a false idea of who the other person was.
I mean if my son wishes you a happy birthday every year, you’ll think “Wow! what a thoughtful guy”…but if he does it simply because he’s told to do so by me every time, is he really that thoughtful?
And where do I stand in all these relationships I was trying to bridge? I was connecting two others, but how strong is my personal connection to each person? Do I value them? Do they value me? And if they do value me, is it genuine or simply because I’m doing their legwork?
I know, it’s a lot to think about for a cookie blog. But that’s one of my big takeaways for the year:
It’s time to keep my aiding and abetting of niceness at CookieText Headquarters.
I get to help people be nice to other people every day, and I get to do it on a deliciously personalized cookie cake…I can bake it and personalize it, I can even sprinkle and box it, but it’s not my role to place the order or to know who should say what to whom: that’s entirely up to the parties involved.