Thursday, September 17, 2015

Something to Think About?

Did someone ever do something in relation to you that you found annoying even though...at some time, or another, you were likely just as guilty of doing something similar? And, further, you recognized this inconvenient fact, but we're still annoyed?

If so, you know a bit about how I am feeling at the moment.

It is all too easy at times to be caught up in one's own stuff to be aware that someone, over there, is going through their own stuff. In general, it happens. But I think the times I find it most annoying is when someone comes at me in a "business" kind of way. 

These days I am not thinking about business stuff, of anyone's. Many days I am tired, and in pain. It is hard to think of anyone/anything. I have often been one to try to help others, but this is where I get torn. If I can't think about your "business" stuff, then perhaps that can also translate to I can't think about "you." That sounds uncomfortably selfish and self-centered.

But it's not like I don't think of others, at all. I also think about the instructions for oxygen maskuse on a plane. A person who will be helping another needs to help themselves first. We can't necessarily help another, if we don't help ourselves first. And yet, many times a focus on ourselves is labelled selfish.

Selfish. In a bad way. Rarely is selfish ever considered a "good" thing.

At the same time I am asking for support, I am contracting. I am pulling away. I am not actively engaged in the things of others. I have even considered unliking a number of Facebook pages I liked just to be nice and supportive to cut down on the "noise," at least for now.

I feel like much of external life is a distraction. I can't help but wonder if I am supposed to be focusing on me more. I can't help but wonder if my focus on others has taken me away from me. This is not to say I believe that this is how my life should have been, or should be, but rather to question how much the focus on others may have been a distraction technique.

Have you ever noticed how a lot of stuff that has you look at you, has you look at you through a business, or other person, context? What would it be to focus on you, for you? Probably pretty uncomfortable. It can be uncomfortable even in the "other" contexts.

Is it possible to know who you are without a context, or a reflection? So much of who I have come to acknowledge myself to be has come through experiences and interactions with others. What they said or did had me step back and consider stuff. This reflection then resulted in a deeper understanding of myself, and where I stood, and wanted to stand.

Could I have figured these things out without it? I am not sure. You don't often realize something until something (someone) says, "hey, look!" Without things that have happened in my life, I may not have ever recognized the times I did something that was unenlightened or came from fear, or was based on a misunderstanding.

Sometimes it takes someone or something outside of us to show us our blind spots. Recently someone told me that I DO have the right to hate my mother. That is such a strong, powerful statement. Who would ever say that?! She also took it a step further by telling me I could choose to release her from my anger and hatred. That would allow there to be no judgment on either side.  

To say these things puts me off balance. Becoming conscious of things is rarely easy. Often they're at odds with what we've been told "should be." I have a better shot at a "should be" with my mom this way than trying to force it in some way. It is likely why I am so at odds with myself about her, and have been, most of my life. I was trying to "force" it with no "real" foundation to build upon. That is probably why times things seemed to improve, the wheels just fell off.

I will leave you with something to consider. Before you put on your business hat and make an unsolicited call, before you send out your unsolicited form business letter, try to find out what may be going on with a person. Before you offer a sales pitch of a product or company as their solution, consider you might be one of more than way too many. 

Most people dealing with an illness do not appreciate feeling like a walking target. The approach, while likely well-intended, is often not as well received as you may like. I have gone to networking meetings offering a service for others dealing with cancer. What I get back is often those who want to interact with me not because of what I have to offer, but because they hear "cancer" and figure I can become a customer, and use what they got. It has been disheartening.

It is also difficult to receive those unsolicited calls and emails. I am never sure how to respond, and I have started not to. Since they obviously have no clue what is going on with me, I am guessing they'll never notice what I do/don't do. It is not the way I prefer to do things, but these days it just feels like there are times I need to come before being polite for polite's sake.

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