A stand?

Whew! Election day is finally past. I’m not against elections, but all of them cannot have been as intense as this one was. I’m not unhappy with the results, but  I won’t go into that, I’m fairly certain everyone who reads my blog can guess my political positions. Anyway, what’s concerning me more is what to do now. Even when the person you wanted is elected, it’s not like some magic spell is going to suddenly give you a chance to do something with it.

I keep seeing and hearing about protests.

I remember when I was a few years younger, I might react like that.

It’s easy to react, and maybe the protesters honestly think they can help something by raising their voice.

I think that poses the more interesting question here. It would be easy to just shake my head at their antics, but what if they have a point? Isn’t it a free country?

This is where it gets more complicated. I like to say that freedom is not freedom without responsibility. A phrase I came up with to sum up my belief that unless you guard yourself, you’ll soon become enslaved to something, even if you don’t realize it. Like the words “I know I need to stop, but…” It’s denial. I support freedom in any area of life, but only if it’s used responsibly.

It’s a question I have to deal with a lot as I transition from minor to adult. What is just sass and disrespect, and what is a legitimate issue that I need to be more in control of if I’m going to learn. I don’t believe there’s an easy answer, because every situation is different when it comes to this. But I have some guidelines.

  1. If I am just raising my voice in anger, and fear, then it is not a stand; it is a plea. It may be a legitimate plea. I think people should be willing to listen to pleas, there may be a real neglect or abuse happening and it needs to be rectified. But, a plea does not deserve to be treated like a principle. A plea is, usually, simply what you, the plea-er, want. It’s not bad to get what you want on occasion, if it’s a good thing , but if you act like what you want is a law of life for the people around you, then they will laugh at you. And rightly so, because not a single one of us deserves that kind of preference
  2. Have I checked my facts? If what you are taking a stand on is something your really know nothing about, beyond what people have told you, the chances are you’ve been misinformed. The people I respect the most have sometimes given me faulty information, not intentionally , but because they were given false information, and so the story goes on. Even the best sources can have an incomplete picture so it’s good to go to more than one. I just had such an experience this past week.
  3. Am I considering the good of all? In  the Seven Habits of Highly Effective People, one of them is “Think win–win.” It means you need to think about what’s best for everyone, yourself included, so that no one gets shortchanged. If we don’t practice this habit, someone is always oppressed, or just plain exhausted. Find things you can agree on with the other party.

If all these fail it may be the time to realize that not everything is worth making a fuss over. Some millennials are never told this, and some, like me, are told it but still have to really struggle to get it ingrained. It took me a long time to develop  thicker skin, I hope it takes other people less time. I am a sensitive person, but I’ve learned that I can’t use that as an excuse to get down every time someone does something I don’t like. And the miracle is, once you stop letting it get you down, often you stop noticing it period.

Since I’m running long, I’ll stop this here. If you have anything to add be sure and comment. I know I need this if nothing else. So maybe some meditation would behoove us all. Catch you later–Natasha.

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