Judge, jury, and elocutioner.

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Submitted by brad on Sat, 03/20/2010 - 03:38

Apparently, I'm a rebel and I didn't even know it.  The focus of the course I've been on lately, are on identifying you. Are you an introverted feeling teacher, an extroverted judger, etc.  I, as usual, was split down the middle. I was high on the logical vs feeling, which I'm fine with, but the other categories were split down the middle. Even in high school it was like that. I remember being equally suited to being an embalmer or a jet pilot. When it came time to talk about the value of these, I said, I don't put much stock in them. to me they're a bit like fate or cold readings.  You take a test, it tells you you're an introvert who learns best from reading books.  Everyone wants to belong to something so you think "hey, that makes sense. From now on I'll only read books".  Then the next class, it's "hey, I do only learn from books, that's so true, it's all I ever do!". It's a self-fulfilling prophecy. Or at least, so it seemed for the majority of people there.

If there's one thing I can't stand, it's people who drink the kool-aid.  This one lady constantly referred to it. "Well I'm an introvert blah blah, so I'll just take a minute to think about that". "I'm an introverted blah blah, so pardon me if I try this" "I'm an introverted bla blah, so let me <checks definition> do this...". That's doing such a disservice to yourself.  It's so limiting. If someone says you're shy, punch 'em in the mouth.  If someone says you need quiet reflection to make a decision, start dodging cars in traffic.  Maybe you won't like it, maybe you'll find you do prefer one over the other, but don't do it because some generic test written by someone who's never met you told you to. Even the time of day, the work you did that day, whether you're fresh off vacation or not, will affect it.

More to the point, if there's one thing I can't stand, it's sheep; or usurping your independence.  There's only one thing we can control in life, and it's ourselves. If someone says "i want to quit but I can't", I'm out.  I have no respect for that.  It's you! How can you argue and lose an argument with yourself? You won't let yourself? No one has control over your person but you.  When I was a kid writing as a lefty, they tried to make me write that weird way. I'm sure you've seen it. Hand bent at 90 degrees, almost writing sideways, so as not to smear the ink. I wouldn't do it. If smearing ink is a problem, then I'll write without smearing. I'll raise my hand slightly off the paper. I'm not going to write sideways because you tell me to. If I want ink on my hand, that's my business. No one has a right to dictate that to me.  I used to be scared to death of doing anything. Couldn't speak in public. I'd sweat, get nervous, get a bad gut, stammer, mumble, nearly pass out.  I'd stay up all night stressing, replaying various scenarios in my head.  Then one day I basically said 'WTF?' Life was slipping by.  I have trouble with speaking, so I volunteered to present/teach at work.  I'm nervous about being open for ridicule or judging, so I started blogging. Creating posters.  It still took me years of telling myself "stop worrying! You worried last time, the time before, the month before, and every time, it worked out. Even when it went badly, it eventually worked out. Nothing bad happened, you're still here, you still have a job, you still have youre wife/girlfriend/kids. It will work out this time as well". Over and over, for years.  Now I hardly think about it. I'm scared of heights, so I rapelled down a building and ziplined off a ski jump.  I once wrote exclusively with my right hand because someone said you can't learn to be ambidextrous. It wasn't very legible, but it got better. Sometimes I quit drinking coke for a moth or two, just to show myself who's boss. The doctor tried to diagnose me with depression. So I exercised, I made myself sleep, and I forced myself to get over it. I still get moody, but I know I'm moody, and I know it will pass. If I get depressed, I invite people over and force myself to socialize. LIke a certain brand of pickles, so for the last year I've bought every other brand. Routines aren't bad. But if you get in a routine without even trying the alternative, you're doing yourself a disservice.

It's the label, I guess. As soon as you allow someone else to label you, you're limited.  Peopel seem to embrace it, and use it as justification. "oh, they said I'm an inroverted feeler, so I act this way and there's nothing I can do about it". They don't know you. Even if the label is correct, you have a choice. If you aren't happy with the label, change it.

I'm still a mess. I eat too much, don't exercise, act like an ass sometimes, and am quick to judge people.  But I know that. For the most I'm alright with it. I come home and say "I had a bad day, I feel like crap, food comforts me, I'm going to eat a bag of chips". It's a choice. I've occasionally done nothing but salad for months.  Didn't care for it. I don't do it because someone told me my personality type is "emotional eater" and, if someone told me that, I'd probably stop just to prove I'm not.

Anyway. I have a killer headache, and I'm losing my train of thought.  My point is - you can control you. It's about the only thing in life you can control. Be a certain way because you choose to. Because you've tried the alternative and prefer it. Not because some test told you to be that way, not because someone told you to act that way, not even because your own insecurities made you.  PIck a behaviour, pick an attitude, and make yourself do the opposite at least once. You might be suprirsed.