Sometimes we epitomise our dreams in people. We set them as our benchmarks. Though we know that everyone has flaws or shortcomings, we somehow overlook that when we look at those we highly esteem.
However, when they falter or act in a way below our expectations and standards they normally have we are shocked and might give them little, if any grace.
Because we connect some of our heroes with some of our greatest and most intimate aspirations, we take it personally when they do or act in a way we consider beside their character.
What To Do When Those You Look Up To Let You Down
When those we look up to fail, we must remember that, they too, are people with flaws like us. The reason we may not be privy to others’ shortcomings is we do not know them well enough.
The extent of the depth of our relationships with people is the extent to which we know or do not know their shortcomings.
When we feel they have failed us by doing or being something we thought they should not be or have done, we must remember that they are human and make peace with the fact that proximity and other reasons did not allow us to know them well enough.
Another thing to consider is we may not really want to be who they were but what they represented. If you think carefully, the things that made us appreciate and desire to be like them like them, were actually qualities and or achievements.
When we encounter people that practice some of the value we highly esteem, it is possible that we make those people synonymous with the values.
When they falter and we feel betrayed, we must learn to identify the values they epitomized and hold on to those values instead.
Look up to your heroes but do not make them your ceiling (Click to Tweet)
At other times the people we look up to champion a cause that is close to our hearts. When those we look up to fail, we must be careful that we do not discredit them and the cause.
Make sure that you do not attach the value or worth of that cause to the individual you esteem highly.
I have witnessed many people abandon a worthy cause due to failure of the leadership of an enterprise. Do not fail other people due to being failed by others yourself. There is still some good to do despite good not being done to you.
When you are let down by those you look up to, celebrate them! Whaa?! Yes! Celebrate them. Celebrate what they have helped you attain. Celebrate the fact that they gave you reason to believe in possibility.
To believe that you could be and attain what they have. Celebrate the fact that they showed you despite shortcomings you still could achieve something significant.
Whatever you do, do not make their failure an excuse for you to fail. Do not justify your failure by someone else’s failure or shortcomings.
You are the one that will ultimately have to live with your failure, not the one you look up to. It is folly to witness someone’s mistake and do the same!
Allow their failures as much as their success to teach you. If the way they were going led to their demise and you were following behind them in the particular area of their failure, you have a chance to stop your own funeral.
Be wise, act now. Do what is right because you know it is right to do not the wrong because your hero did it.
One last thing: If you are let down by someone you look up to, ‘mourn’. Be angry with them and get over it. When you are done with that, do not write them off. They may still have a few more lessons to teach you.
The last thing they need when they are on the ground is to be kicked some more. I once heard an old song say, “The only time to look down on a man is when you’re picking him up.”
When those you looked up to let you down, pick them up! It may be your opportunity to give back to those that have been giving to you!
Bonus: You might also want to check out these posts:
- The Underrated Success Enabler
- Looking Up To No Ceiling
- A Catalyst For Learning and Equipping to Remember
What else do you suggest when we are let down by those we look up to?