Personal things to work on …

5 June, 2004 Ken Uncategorized

Is this too private? Well, if I’m going to be utterly self-honest, I may as well make it so.

(1) Keep my mouth shut. Curb the need to have the last word.

This is especially helpful when dealing with people who are angry with you, even if you are or are not angry with them. Example: I’ve wanted to straigten out things with someone recently who doesn’t want to talk to me. I need to let it be, especailly if they are apparently incapable of taking annything other than the worng way. (Hell, such people would even read into this post if they read it!) To hold a rational, mature conversation, takes TWO people who are willing to be rational and mature, not just faking it. Don’t waste the energy. Which brings me to the second point …

(2) Stop wasting time obsessing about things I cannot change or fix.

In particular, the way people feel or what they think. I cannot make people agree with me. I cannot change people’s minds wether they are wrong or not, or have all the facts in the world in front of them, courtesy of moi. They have to decide to change their own minds. Even my own daughter is not required to beleive what I beleive or see things the same way. And that’s okay. I don’t have to like it, or even agree, but need to know when to say when. They can beleive I am the anti-christ and tell all the neighbors, but I need to let go and forgive their judgements … THAT’S the secret I’ve been missing. FORGIVE people’s ignorance and judgements instead of worry about if they are right all the time.

(2) Stop wasting time obsessing about things I cannot change or fix — Part 2

Unfair as it is , I do not run the universe. I must take responsibility for my circumstances, but only so much as is reasonable. “Things could have been different if only I had” is a perscription for a mental and moral breakdown, and is a pill I’ve taken too often. Things happened, and I had choices and took them the best I could. But there were only so many choices, and self-incrimination is another poison I need to get out of my system, with healthy doses of self-forgiveness and self-esteem. Which brings me to a seeming conmtradiction to (1) …

(3) I must Tell people when they’ve crossed the line in judging me.

People can beleive what they want (see #2), but I will not accept anyone else shoving this down my throat, and need to answer with a stiff STFU! THEY did not have to make my choices. THEY don’t have to live with my choices as much as I do no matter HOW MUCH it affects them. THEY were either not there, or in some cases were even part of the problem. And if I did something wrong, I have the right not to listen to anyone say this more than once. Then it is in the past.

Repeat after me, Ken: “I will not continue this conversation if you continue to berate me for any reason.” And if they give attitude about it, follow up with, “Would you please call me back when you intend to talk to me constructively with respect and not sarcasm or abuse.” Heaven’s above! I should have used that line years ago! But this will be difficult, as I don’t LIKE stasnding up for myself, and then when it’s too late, I get pissed off and dish it back to the other person, stooping to their level. Next point ..

(4) Don’t stoop to other people’s level. Turn the other cheek.

I usually don’t have trouble with this, but it goes back to the whole “Last Word” thing. People play games, and I often fail to use the lines in (3) above. Or I use something like that and then don’t hang up, and just get dragged down until I look just as immature or abusive as they were the whole time. With one or more people, I’ve turned the cheek so many times there’s no more meat on them. I need to build that muscle back to where it belongs.

(5) I won’t apologize for thinking I’m always moral or right.

This should be a law, or at least taxed as stupidity per use. If I thought I was wrong, wouldn’t that then make me right? Would I knowingly be immoral? Would I do something wrong on purpose or beleive I’m a bad person when I’m not? Am I not entitled to mistakes without being a bad person? And yet I fear I am not honest with myslef if I look at myself as a good person who did (predominantly) good things thoughout my life. Does it mean I’m ignoring big, bad things I’m even now making the best of like having a child out of wedlock? No! Remember (3), Ken!

But going back to (2 – Part 2), what if I realy DID always do the right thing? Is that so hard to believe? Maybe it is, even for me — I know I’ve made some mistakes (op.cit.), but when I haven’t why does everyone take that to mean I am being self-righteous because I beleive I DID do the right thing most of the time in my life? Is that so bad? Where are my self-esteem pills? I won’t need them if I follow this rule.

My problem is that my mind is so open, everything falls out. Other people don’t try to look at criticisms as possibly being true, where I take them too seriously, even if I don’t come off that way. I have an honest introspection that is almost non-existent in other people, and I should not be ashamed to say this, even if people think it’s boasting. There is a fine line between boasting and telling the truth, and I need to stop worrying about most everybody else not knowing the difference. There, now isn’t THAT conceited of me?

(6) IMPORTANT: Stop trying to prove myself to my daughter.

I Love her and she Loves me. That’s all that will ever really matter. Am I afraid it will be taken from me? Hhhhmmmm. Refocus …

Even when I admit when I am mistaken (or outright wrong) or did some things wrong in my life or apologize if I treated her unfairly, deep down inside I want her to think I’m always right and good, This is probably normal. But trying to convince her is not. I mean, I love showing off knwoledge about things in general, which by itself may be annoying to some but not a sin. But I almost feel compelled to prove to her that I know what I am talking about. Why am I so worried she will think me incomeptent on subjects I know I am well versed in? Why am I so defensive or contrary to the things she says in everyday life? I used to think that was just her, but we both got into the habit of doing it no matter who started it.

Is it because she doesn’t live in my home and I’m trying to hard to “make her” acknowledge me as some kind of authority on subjects or in general? Whew! Better think this one through some more.

(7) Anything I missed – suggestions welcome.

Behavior and attitudes are habits — repetitive choices. God please grant me the discipline to work on these.

And if anyone is reading this and giggling sickly about my confessed shortcoming, see (2) and (3). Thank you. Have a Good Day.


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