I’m all for dancing to the beat of your own drum, doing things you love because you love them even if they are a little weird and wearing what you want even if it doesn’t match. Some of the coolest people I know are probably a little nuts on some level. Some of the stuff they do is actually kinda stupid and I’m here for it! It goes so far that I doubt that people that are just like everyone else are being authentic. That could be because I’m a little off center too. When someone tells me my clothes don’t match I’ll correct them saying it all matched my mood perfectly this morning. And yes I totally think that’s a thing. People’s weirdest quirks fascinate me. I think it’s super cool that one guy has been writing the scripts for an immersive fantasy game that he and his friends play together for over a decade. I think it’s awesome that someone else leaves their christmas tree up until March to beat the winter blues. I know someone that drives a truck with axe marks in it and everyone here knows the story of how they got there. All weird and very wonderful if you ask me.
But at some point you might be so out of step with others that it’s a problem. When that happens people will start to tell you it is and you have a responsibility to think long and hard about that. A collection of semi offensive stickers on a beat up old car is hilarious in my book but insighting thousands of people to take up arms and endanger the lives of others is not. What the world witnessed in Washington today is a reminder that we all have a responsibility to listen to those around us. Since we all have some power our actions have consequences after all. This moment has been coming for months. While I have a twitter space for this blog its not something I spend time on until this fall. I haven’t been posting fitness stuff on there I’ve been reading the president’s tweets and its been making me worried since then. He’s been stoking this fire for months now and it was only a matter of time until it started to burn. But what can we take away from this moments for our own lives.
As cool as it is to do your own thing and not conform sometimes you have to listen up. If people around you start to warn you, or twitter starts to flag almost all of your tweets, it might be time to listen up. If a lot of people are pointing to your actions and saying “you’re going to hurt yourself or someone else.” it’s time to change something before it comes true like it did this week. If people are telling you that you’re speaking up on the wrong side of an issue you might be. Make no mistake Trump is primarily responsible for the fervor that lead to the violence this week but all the mouthpieces like his children and other politicians and commentators played a role too. A lesser role was played by all the people who repeated and spread those messages to a wider audience. You can believe what ever you want but if spreading that belief contributes to someone getting hurt you might feel a lot differently after the fact. Take away message sometimes we all need to listen to others more than we do!
This weekend take a minute to think about the ‘quirks’ you have. Are they basically harmless like still crimping your hair or are they leading to a bigger explosion down the line? Next think about the people closest to you, do they have a specific issue that’s going to lead them to trouble? If you approach them now with love and concern this might just be the moment they listen.
As I often say, no one is normal. We all have our quirks and idiosyncrasies it’s just that some of us are sociopaths.
Over the past year I’ve learned that it’s just not enough to not be a racist, bigot or close minded fool.
Even if you are none of that you need to call out others who are.
By standing by or even encouraging these things, we are part of the problem.
Many people may not realize what they are saying until someone points it out.
As they say in business if you can’t measure it you can’t manage it.
If people are carrying forward the racism or negative thinking that they may have inherited from their family, they may see it as normal and not negative at all.
I cringe when I recall what my mother used to call Brazil nuts.
If people don’t realize that their words or behaviors are negative, they cannot reflect and hopefully change.
It is up to those of us who have reflected to let people know that certain ideas and words are not acceptable.
We may loose a few friends or acquaintances, but that is a small price to pay to move our society towards a more perfect union.
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