Eye to I
Off the Wall, January 11
, 2013

How many times have we heard a conversation whereby the person doing the talking constantly refers to oneself? All one hears is the mentioning of the word, “I.” I have to utilize it here to express my opinion that as I see it, these people are so stuck on themselves when, in turn, other people’s lives may be far more interesting in the long run.

People who use this tactic employ what I call the “Eye to ‘I’ Syndrome.”

I used to think psychiatrists might help steer these people to a fuller understanding that life really should center around others primarily.

A little birdie just tweeted in my ear telling me that there are sounds in the air hinting that some people may have figured out that, conclusively, “These people must be “I” doctors. After all, when patients go to therapists, they very often will stretch out on a flat type of couch, and one may hear them stating, “I” have a problem. “I” don’t know what to do about it. “I” have tried everything, but nothing works, etc., etc. etc.

Again, I have to employ that word by stating, “The way I see it, they’ve completely missed the boat.”

First and foremost, if one proceeds and continues with this negative habit, it will reveal that the talker is certainly full of insecurity and imbalance.

Second, avoiding the solution and continuing on the same path will only cause peril within the individual who, time and time again, will try to get people interested in their lifestyles, which will most likely be to no avail.

So, what’s the answer, one may be asking himself? Easy. One was never meant to do anything himself, but with God, everything is possible. Besides, if one turns to God instead of man, everything is cheaper, and I’m sure most people like to save money.

If one hasn’t begun a relationship with Him yet, now is the time. One will find one’s life changing and Our Lord’s help will be very beneficial and rewarding. Prayer does wonders, you know…

And finally, talk to others about their lives. They will be more than happy to share – believe me.

For example, Betty Lou Swakhammer of Des Moines, IA, was a naturally born talker if there ever was one. You could hear her a mile away as she repeated the same old stories to everyone to whom she came in contact. Most people scurried away when they saw her coming.

One day, out of the blue, she changed her plan of attack. Instead of using the pronoun, as was habitually the case, she began asking people about their lives, friends and relatives. People actually flocked to her side to share a little bit about themselves.

Freddy Doopai also possessed the bad habit. Not only did he tell others of his ancestors past, but all one had to do was ask about his health and he would give the whole nine yards of his history from when he was a small child and almost died to the present state. People got tired of that very quickly.

Then there was Nancy Swigart. Her smile was a drawing card unto itself. When she looked at you and radiated, it became obvious she was most interested in one’s welfare. After she passed, people were so taken by the event, that they all shared one thing – “You know,” they would say, “she was always so kind and always wanted to know about others, not herself. We hardly know anything about her.”

Betty Lou and Freddie definitely will be remembered – not particularly in a favorable way, but Nancy was different, need it be said. Could it be, she was an angel sent from God to impress others just how we should act around others? Don’t say, “No way,” because you can’t make such a remark. If you think you can, you are putting limits on God, and you are just fooling yourself.

Here’s an idea. As a New Year’s resolution, see how much you can learn about others, forgetting oneself in the process. Its been said, you know, everyone has a story to tell. You will never know until start today and drop subtle hints.

Try it. You just may be surprised what one can learn!

- Paul J. Volkmann
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