A few hours ago I was getting ready for dinner. We were expecting dinner guests. I was in the bathroom, getting dressed. The dinner was very casual, and the weather was warm, so it was shorts and a t-shirt.
My six-year old, Jake, asked me, “Where are you going, ‘Mr. Fancy-pants?'”
I looked at him in the mirror, standing next to me. “What do you mean? I’m getting ready for dinner.” I looked down at myself. “I’m not fancy.”
“You’re combing your hair,” he said. “Pretty fancy for you.”
And so I realized Jake has a bright career ahead of him in motivational speaking.
If you ever want to know how everyone else sees you, ask a six-year old. Not directly, but get his impression of you. He will give it to you, unfiltered by nuance, shame, pride, embarrassment, politeness or civility.
A child hasn’t learned the art of the Polite Lie that’s so characteric of adults, that is so pervasive, we are hardly aware of it.
Go ahead, ask him. If you’re ready for the answer.