Stop defending yourself! Quit justifying your existence, your actions, or your life’s intentions to every person you observe. We’ve got it all twisted. Sure, it’s important to explain ourselves to our family and close friends. They’re invested in our future and our failures could drag them down financially or emotionally. Everyone else, though? Who cares! Why invest your energy in the stranger that might scoff at you? All that does is lead to feeling insecure!
We can decide whether our weaknesses will cause us to become weak. While most weaknesses can become excuses that can potentially control us, there are exceptions that should be respected. My intentions are pure, so let’s not focus on any possible hypotheticals for this week’s update to “The Story.” Instead, let’s focus on two casual examples of when main characters John (off-center) and Trishna (center) decide to not let their physical weaknesses make them weak.
My addictions strangle me when I’m unable to cope with situations. Hearing bad news kills. Chilling, defined here as succumbing to any addiction, then feels acceptable. If you’re anything like me, we need to re-enforce our defenses, rather than ask that the constant barrage of life’s perhaps-positives and perhaps-negatives cooperate with us. It would be nicer to have a conflict-free life. That won’t happen. Let’s instead try figuring out how to build up our defenses.
“OK, Jane. We have time for one more question.”
“What’s the successful candidate look like in this role? What should I focus on to prevent myself from being unsuccessful?”
“Well, lemme tell you about the old guy. What a lazy bum! Couldn’t do nothing! He couldn’t understand anything we’d give ‘im! We’d tell him repeatedly how to do his assigned work and he’d seem to just forget! Stay away from the guy you are replacing!”
I was feeling stressed out until Gogol Bordello kicked into the chorus of “Break the Spell,” just as I’m usually always despondent after hearing bad news, until I breathe in deeply and accept the circumstance. No one died, nor will die because of this. It’s unfortunate, sure, but that makes for good writing fodder, so get over it! That’s not meant to be callous or superficial. It’s just acceptance is the first step toward resolution.
I used to profoundly respect anyone’s opinion. It’s not that I’m some kind of awful curmudgeon now. More that I refuse to freely accept anyone’s subjectivities about the world, or myself, until I’ve listened with my empathically critical ear to validate their true intentions. If the argument is reasonable enough, I’ll buy it. If not, I move on with my life. Why obsess over negative thoughts? Why not forget and carry on? That’s easy, right?