Finding Focus: Do you know you?
The tune playing as I flesh out this month’s article is No New Tale to Tell from
Love and Rockets’ 1987
release, Earth, Sun, Moon.
Yep, Generation-X to the bone.
Preface: I’ve mentioned in previous offerings that I will only write about what I know or am familiar. For this month’s article, that will, again, be me.
Have you ever caught yourself wondering, “Why would that person do something that way or what caused them to react that way?” Another good question to ask yourself would be “when is the last time you really got to know someone?”
I love finding out what makes people tick.
But I’ve only been able to really appreciate it by putting myself under the microscope.
It wasn’t until I’d almost come to the end of my thirties when I took my first personality test. That test turned out to be the MBTI® (Myers Briggs Type Indicator). Although I did enjoy the test, I didn’t take it for fun.
No, it was part of a battery of test given to me by a psychiatrist to ultimately conclude that I am, indeed, as Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder Predominantly Inattentive (ADHD-PI) as they come.
You cannot go against nature
Because when you do
Go against nature
It's part of nature too
I’d been given similar test when I was growing up because, at that time, it had been determined that I was “lazy” and I was not “applying myself.” Did I answer the test truthfully? Of course not; I told them what I thought they wanted to hear. Why? Because what kid wants to hear something is wrong them? Kids just want to be “normal,” right?!
Our little lives get complicated
It's a simple thing
Simple as a flower
And that's a complicated thing
Not this go around. This time we pull the curtain back and really find out what’s drivin’ Wes’ ship. I did it. I was frank and honest with my answers to each question.
Now, before I give my armchair synopsis of what that means, I should also mention that, if I’ve sparked some curiosity in some of you to take a personality test, please know that the answers also point out your flaws. In short, some of you might find out that you can be the south end of a north bound mule in certain circumstances. I know I did.
Yours truly is ESTJ (extroversion—sensing—thinking—judging). Which means I’m highly prone to the aforementioned mule metaphor.
I’ll bypass the psychology babble and tell you what I found out about me in my own words. I found out that I am dedicated, strong-willed, I am always direct and honest and loyal (sometimes to a fault), and crave order. I am also an excellent organizer which is a laughably ironic quality to have when you also know you’re woefully unable to pay attention.
That’s all great, right? Well, that was the spoon full of sugar. Here’s comes the medicine:
I’m stubborn as a mule and it unnerves me to no end when a proven system is abandoned for something that’s never been tried before. Want to see an ESTJ spin out? Ask them “What if we tried it this way?”
My stubbornness extends to what I believe is right, wrong, and what is socially accepted. I am also quite self-conscious and am always concerned what others may or may not be thinking of me. By the same token I am not very good at empathizing.
“Why do I care, Wes?” Have you ever carpooled with someone and gotten detoured? Or maybe you’re both cruising along and you suggest to your passenger that you take a more scenic route? Did your passenger immediately tense up and become visibly uncomfortable. Did you wonder what was going on inside their head?
I can tell you.
That little voice inside their (my) head is shouting, “UGH! HOW LATE IS THIS GOING TO MAKE ME?!?”
My world is your world
People like to hear their names
I'm no exception
If finding out all this stuff about myself has taught me anything, it’s that I will have to work on something that has been my adversary my entire life—patience. But, I’m an awfully lucky guy.
I’ve somehow managed to surround myself with some truly remarkable people. I married a gal who knows what winds me up and knows how to bring me back to earth.
I work for a lady who could give Job lessons in patience and has mentored and inspired me every step of the way. And my friends are the best. THE BEST. You know who you are. Because of everyone I’ve just given a nod to, I’ve been able to accomplish more in the last 7-8 years than I have in all the years prior, and that’s a lot of years (I’m still not telling exactly how many).
To those of you that I’m just getting to know, I’m genuinely curious. I want to know as much as you’re willing to share, but please know I’m not just trying get in your business, I want to know everything about you so I can be a better me for you.
When he’s not rocking his socks off, Wes Brooks spends his days as the Development Coordinator at the DuBard School for Language Disorders at The University of Southern Mississippi. A native of Laurel, Brooks is a husband, a father, and a guitarist for the local band, The 6550’s. Email him at: firstname.lastname@example.org