Denise DuBois

ddubois@citizenea.com

No matter the personality, we work better together

Sept. 28, 2017

There’s a scene during the “pray” portion of Eat. Pray. Love., the adaptation of Elizabeth Gilbert’s memoir, in which the main character, Liz (Julia Roberts), who is staying at an ashram in India, puts a pin on her shirt announcing she is “in silence.” Not 10 minutes later, the pin comes off again. 

Liz was trying to transform herself from a “Chatty Cathy” to a more demure, quiet, soulful spirit. Instead, she is immediately asked to be the coordinator for another group of people coming to the ashram - a job that will require her to talk and be her naturally bubbly self.  The lesson was that when you try to be something or someone you’re not, God will put you in a situation to be exactly what He created you to be. 

I feel like I’ve been in a similar situation lately. I’ve often described my personality as “Champaign on steroids,” (you get the picture - it’s really bubbly). Even people who haven’t known me long enough can attest to the perfection of the description. Sometimes, though, it can be just as bad as it is good. I’m sure my coworkers get aggravated by me on a regular basis because of my excited, squeally voice and energy. That got me thinking: maybe I don’t need to be so “extra,” as the younger generation is calling it. 

I reminded myself on a daily basis not to be so giddy and the first day it was okay. I got a lot of work done in the office, but things were quieter. I dare say it was dull. It’s not in my nature to be quiet and dull. I’m a lot like Liz in that way. I want to be at the social center engaging my peers in nonsensical fun. 

We were created for a reason. I have my very specific personality for a reason. You have yours for a reason, too. Everyone in my working environment is vastly different. The people in my family are different, even though we do have similar silliness (I had to get it from somewhere). But the point is, it takes all the different personality types to make an environment work. In the office, we work well together and play off each other’s strengths and weaknesses. We work together. Your personality and your traits are meant to work in the environment God put you in for His good. 

I hate to think that we sometimes stifle what we don’t like about ourselves for fear that someone doesn’t like us or that we get on someone’s nerves. Don’t get me wrong - we shouldn’t intentionally aggravate someone, but we should be thankful for our differences. 

Next time you think you’re being a little “extra,” be resolved to let your personality shine through. Whether they tell you or not, the people around you love you for who you are.