[Courses] [Spineful Living, lesson 2: When Nice = Rude]
kclair at gmail.com
Mon Apr 9 14:34:30 UTC 2007
On 4/6/07, Carla Schroder <carla at bratgrrl.com> wrote:
> ==Our Prime Assertive Human Right==
> Assertive Right 1: You have the right to judge your own behavior, thoughts,
> and emotions, and to take responsibility for their initiation and
> consequences upon yourself.
This has been the crux of my life for the past year. If I had read
this statement a few years ago, my immediate reaction would have been,
"how is taking responsibility a right?!" ... of course I would not
have shared that with anyone! I think the issue was that I only ever
saw the negative impact of my actions and emotions, so why would I
ever want to take responsibility for them?
I thought Gayathri's story was so interesting because I've never been
told what to do with my life professionally, other than "whatever
makes you happy". Yet we are both responding to the same issue.
Only ever being able to see how my actions would hurt other people
(and subsequently feeling guilty for my choices) led me to a pattern
of "lies of omission". I have never really had a problem making
choices, but communicating those choices (or thoughts or emotions) and
having to face the consequences is another story! One example of this
that I will probably never forget is when I was living in a city
abroad with two of my friends, and at some point I decided to move
back to the U.S.. I was so scared of my friend's reactions that I
didn't tell them about my plans, and then of course they heard about
them from someone else. So not only were they hurt that I was moving,
but that I didn't even tell them.
I have wanted to quit my job for years, but I have been using the
excuse "it would just be too hard on them if i quit" to avoid the
effort of moving on. I wanted something magical to happen where I
would get this new opportunity without putting any work into it, and
until then I could just use my old guilt to justify not doing
anything. So in this scenario, I really had to learn to embrace the
idea of responsibility as a positive thing!
The communication issue is a constant opportunity for learning in my
life. At least I can look back and see that I've progressed. Now, I
can actually talk to people about uncomfortable things that might make
them feel bad because I know that it will only be worse to deal with
it later if I withhold it. I see that there is still an element of
avoid-the-worst-case-scenario there, rather than focusing on feeling
good about my choices or thoughts or feelings. I have actually never
really thought about it that way, so thanks!!
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