Know Better + Then Do Better
Yesterday and then today have held the first hints of the warmth on its way. I skipped the gym this morning and instead opted for a walk along the water. I’m on the East Coast of Italy, so the Adriatic is my companion. Give me salty water to look at and I’m happy.
Podcasts as you know, are my jam. Washing dishes – podcast. Folding laundry – casting it up. Walk along the water – you get the picture. Today I was listening to a couple of Oprah’s Super Soul Sunday episodes with her mentor and someone she refers to as her mother, the late Dr. Maya Angelou. Every moment of their conversation was gold. Dr. Angelou spoke and I was nodding and tearing up. As I was blubbering while walking, I got REAL nice with myself. As we do when we’re in the presence of someone as shiny as Dr. Angelou.
One of her soft spoken nuggets of wisdom, “When we know better, we do better.”
I nodded along with her while thinking, “I do! I do Maya!” I began revisiting all manner of crap that play Jedi Mind tricks on me at 4 am. Silly things from years ago that randomly pop in demanding attention. All the craptastic things I did in high school. Or the intolerance I had for a roommate of mine freshman year of college who was vastly different than I was. Or the instances when I was an absolute a-hole to my mother and had her in tears.
I was thinking about Know Better, Do Better in terms of myself. But what about the times someone has “wronged” us in some way. I slowed down my pace, deep in thought. People began passing me on the walkway as I turned it over in my head. What about instances that we’re (I’m) still holding onto, actions from others that could easily fall into the category of “If they knew better, they would have done better.”
Granting the grace of this phrase to others, really is still about me. I WANT to think this. And so, I’m going to try it on for size.
Wear it around like a favorite new shirt. What about you? Need a new shirt too?