Self-Justification – Slam the brakes on!

I wouldn’t regard myself as a liar, well, maybe the odd white one but nothing major.  This all changed though when my son was born.  He was just a few weeks old when I kicked any morals and ethics I had out of the window…

He cried – a lot.  Upon hearing the almost deafening wailing noise piercing through my sleep like a knife through butter, I would put on my best BAFTA nominated performance, quite happily pretending that I was fast asleep.  I was happy and content with my behaviour and justified it by telling myself, “I have to go to work in the morning” and “I’ve got a 3 hour drive tomorrow”.

This self-justification fuelled my behaviour, in this example by lying.  This isn’t me, this isn’t how I was brought up but my self-justification made me become selfish and self-centred.  Not my proudest moment, but one that I’m sure every parent can relate to at some point!  It may come as no surprise that Sarah, my better half, knew all along that I was lying but simply didn’t have the time or the energy to argue with me at 2.30 in the morning.  I’ve cancelled the BAFTA!

How often do you betray your own morals and ethics?  How many times do you think negatively about someone else? How many times have you sent an abrupt/rude email in response to a snotty email you received? How many times have you delayed responding to an email because they didn’t reply to yours straight away? How many times have you snapped at home because your partner snapped at you?

We do these things all of the time. And we justify our thoughts, feelings and behaviours by telling ourselves that the other party deserves it.  Adopting this self-justifying mentality can be stressful and uses up a lot of energy.  The question is, is it always necessary?  Probably not.

The next time you’re about to snap or see the red mist, slam the brakes on, take a step back, assess the situation and decide for yourself whether your self -justification is morally correct.

If you or your guys could benefit from learning more about self-justification and the impact it can have on your management style, then get in touch now to see how we can help.


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