Balancing Act: The Newsletter (No. 207, November 2016)
Follow me on Twitter! You can find me here:
AND: Join me on Periscoope: @BentleyGTCSpeed Weekly live broadcasts on self-esteem and self-worth.
And find me on Facebook:
Free consulting newsletter: The Million Dollar Consulting® Mindset:
I'm fascinated by Facebook. Even attempting to be somewhat selective in accepting "friends," I find people who can only use profanity as adjectives. People who desperately need proof that others are reading their posts. People desperately in need of others' validation. People who share what should be intimate and private moments. People without respect for others' privacy. People who believe that anyone who doesn't agree with them is stupid (and that the country is "falling apart" if their own advice is not heeded). People who are immediately derivative when the see something appealing and rapidly republish it. People who see it as a vanity publishing platform.
There is a lot of neediness on Facebook.
It strikes me as a place where inner demons are exposed, private thoughts released, and uncertainties and weaknesses revealed. There is an impersonality in virtual reality. What I might be merely thinking but not saying when I'm with you, I'll print on Facebook. Where once people would be awkward and uncomfortable being seen in a hospital bed or with an injury, we now broadcast it in full color with specific, gruesome commentary. We demand that people see how much fun we're having on vacation, or how much pain we endure in a missed airline connection,
And we fear that not enough people are paying attention. We demand that they prove they are reading our words and watching our photos. We're offended when they do not.
Are so many people this lonely? Are so many devoid of real friends? Do they actually crave this much attention to bolster fragile egos?
I'm not sure of the answers, and I'm willing to agree that Facebook serves some purpose of community (it was designed to connect students on college campuses). But I do know this: If you ever want to be assured of how mentally and emotionally healthy you are, just read Facebook for a few minutes.
The human condition: Please read before disregarding
Almost daily someone will imperiously tell me that they didn't receive instructions for something I'm doing, although I sent them out and the email did not bounce. My missive, of course, landed in someone's spam, junk, or overlooked file.
I'm often asked the exact same question by the same person in the same circumstances. What do I do when this happens? Where's a good place to eat in this city? Who was the person who wrote that book? The reason for this is that the person in question isn't paying attention. They use my response in the moment, then promptly forget the information or fail to integrate the learning. They have already mentally raced on to something else. I'm reminded of water bugs which walk on water only because they don't pause long enough to allow themselves to sink.
People just aren't paying attention. I watch people go through stop signs, not because they're trying to speed their trip or flout the law, but because they didn't notice them. They're too busy on their phone, or listening to music, or practicing their presentation for later in the day.
We're not just distracted, we're obtuse. Comedian Stephen Wright said once that "I'd love to daydream, but I keep getting distracted."
In workshops I'm often asked questions which I've answered an hour prior. Sometimes someone will ask me to repeat something several times, copying what I say word-for-word. So they capture the words but miss the point. They have the language but not the logic.
Neither Bentley nor Buddy Beagle have to learn anything positive twice. They know when and how to mooch treats. They understand how to get the premium positons on the couch and bed. They can tell which door I'm going to use by the route I take. They know the UPS guy gives them a biscuit to shut them up when they make a fuss on his arrival.
I don't know whether this is your experience or if you agree with me or not, but understand I have no intention of repeating it.
The doorbell rings. The dogs start barking. I go to the main door, no one there. More ringing. I go to the side door. No one. Does the door to the yard have a doorbell? I notice the dogs are barking upstairs. I figure there's a defect in the bell, grab some batteries in the kitchen and run upstairs. As I'm trying to open the bell unit, the dogs bark at a new ringing behind me—from the police drama playing on the television.
Having problems viewing this email, click here.
Balancing Act® is our registered trademark. You are encouraged to share the contents with others with appropriate attribution. Please use the ® whenever the phrase "Balancing Act" is used in connection with this newsletter or our workshops.
Stop asking permission all the time. The lack of permission is in your own mind, not a 'keep off the grass' sign.