Tagged Dear

Dear July Part I: Life Lessons Learned This Month

Know your share of the nuts.

Have you ever been a cocktail party when they put out a bowl of nuts for the guests? I’m not
sure why we do this. Nuts before dinner isn’t very fulfilling. Everybody knows that and yet
when they come out, we all reach in to eat them. It’s actually a test for two things – self-control and self-awareness. We can choose to have a few, just enough to quench our hunger and make us thirsty for more wine. We can choose not to have any at all, save ourselves for dinner. Or we can choose to eat as many as we can without paying any attention to how many other guests are in the room and what our share is. The first two choices don’t need explaining as they are a pretty good proxy for someone with self-control and self-awareness but the last one does. Being the person that eats all the nuts probably has its roots in our childhood. That was the kid that always had their hand up, the one that always cried out pick me, pick me. It was also the kid that rushed to the cafeteria to be the first to get the biggest slice of pizza on pizza day in school. These individuals grow up and become the person at work that takes up all the time in the meeting. The one that asks all the questions, takes the soap box and gives dissertations, and doesn’t let anyone else get a word in edgewise. I’ve often wondered if they could hear themselves talking or watched themselves on video if they would pick up on how this affects others in the room. Next time this happens, look around at the body language in the room. You’ll see people rolling their eyes, shifting in their seats, or turning on their smart phones to text someone. The sad part is that no one ever tells the individual – ‘stop eating all the nuts. It’s annoying.’ The next time you’re at a cocktail party or a meeting – check yourself. Make sure you only take your share. Not anyone else’s.