Tag Archives: self-editing

Have someone edit you. Life Lesson #20

Everyone needs an editor.

I may have mentioned before that I like to tell stories. I make them up easily. In 8th grade, I figured out how to help a good friend, “D” edit his report card story for his irrate Dad.

D hadn’t been studying or doing his homework. D was also the best player on our basketball team and we needed him. I didn’t know it then, but I was his editor, mentoring him on how to spin the story for his dad.  Worked too. D got to play, and we were runner’s up that year in the league.

Most of us come with a certain set of skills at which we excel. If you haven’t figured out what those are yet, stop, pull up google and get started. Trust me, you are good on some stuff. Very good at other stuff.

But ever wonder why top athletes have coaches? Why would Michael Phelps, the fastest swimmer in the whole world, need a coach? Or why would Stephen King and Malcolm Gladwell need editors?

The Democratic party just held a press summit. Their message was lost because of the typo on their talking cards. Opps.

My wife did the weekly info sheet at a church were I was the associate. One week she listed me as the Ass. Associate. Funny. But embarrassing.

We all tell our life stories from our own perspective. We see the world through our lenses. An editor can help us bring some balance, some clarity, and sometimes help us tell our story in a way that others at least understand.

The tough part is that editors usually aren’t popular. They challenge us. They force us to rewrite, rethink, reconsider and generally don’t fall for the lies we sometimes tell ourselves.  My kenyan friends called the place I lived “Little America.” I see myself as firmly middle class. Most of my African friends saw me as Bill Gates Wealthy. A few of my American friends put me a step above the trailer park.  I’m constantly trying to tell me story, as a person who cares for others, regardless of the socio-economic labels we put on each others. To do so effectively, I need editors.

Who is your editor?