I was talking with a friend last week about failure. When we dug into it, one of the scariest parts about failure is how its perceived by others. The fall we can handle, people seeing the fall—that’s the hard part.
Even for those of us who are service-driven and mindful, as normal human beings it’s natural for us to asses a situation in terms of what we can get out of it. It’s a natural survival technique really, “is this worth expending my energy on?” That is a totally valid question and it’s important that we ask ourselves just that. Yet, there are so many other times—especially in our modern world where basic survival is not our top priority—when the question of “what can I get out of this” is overemphasized.
Am I really going to throw it back to Fat Joe in today’s Monday Mantra? Hell yeah. Lean back.
I was looking back in my journal this weekend. Earlier this year I wrote:
“Broken. I don’t feel broken. More like not put together. Like there are pieces around me, and I know these pieces, I’ve studied them, I know where they want to go. Yet, I can’t seem to put them there.”
The last month I’ve been in a bit of a haze—between stress, to-do lists, and too much future tripping, I let my soul-priorities go right out the window.
And you know what happened? Not that much. I still did everything I had to do. I still had accomplishments. I learned things. I got through my days.
As mindful guys and gals we’ve done our inner work, at least some of it. We’ve looked at the parts of our personalities that could use more compassion or less fire and we’ve improved. One thing I’ve noticed about myself this past week is that when I get out of my daily routine those bad habits I’ve worked on in the past, like being overcritical of myself and others, can creep back up and try to take over my mind once again.
I’m actually not stupid. Or wrong. Or different from anyone else. But you know what? It’s taken me about 32 years to realize that.
When it comes to intimate details about myself, I’ve always been a very open person. If someone asks me about a certain situation and I’d tell them the truth, however weird or uncomfortable it was. Maybe not all the time—I follow basic social cues and try not to be too inappropriate—but if I’m having an honest conversation with a person, close friend, casual friend, neighbor, or otherwise, I usually let the truth out when asked.
Truly, I’ve shared very intimate details about my life with people who had no business knowing them. And you know what? I’ve always been embarrassed about this quality of mine.