The Truth of It
This is no easy task. I don't like to look so closely at myself and my defects. It ruins my vision of myself--that vision I am attempting to make the "real" version of me.
Worse than the task of self-inventory is the task of determining who was hurt and how to make amends. It is one thing if I have trash in my own house; it is another if I have flung it into the corners of your house.
After this big-clean-up and this making-of-amends, I like to see what I want to improve on for the next year--kind of like goal-setting. This year, however, after the fantastic speaker who came to B'nai Amoona, I am instead going to make my "goal" the prayer I wrote in the exercise with the speaker.
This prayer, which is in a lot of ways is way too personal to share, really encompasses a vision of myself that I would prefer to be the everyday-real-version of me in particular situations. I know that cannot make sense without you knowing my prayer and perhaps I will share it one day.
The second half of this "goal" has to do with lashon hara. I have written about this before but I am going to try once again to meaningfully practice this. Don't get me wrong -- I think I do a better job at not engaging in lashon hara than most people I know. However, sometimes I do not know how to step away from being in the middle of people who are doing it...and I find that a lot of people I know are back-stabbers, whether they are intending to be so or not. So, I want to improve on myself in the capacity of not engaging in and also finding a way out when others are doing it.
I wish you all the best of luck in your personal inventory and amend-making as we approach the last days before Yom Kippur.