While driving home today I noticed two different people. A jogger waiting at the stoplight, ponytail swinging, matching shoes and outfit, then further along the way was a teen in dropped khaki pants, well, not fully dropped. No boxers were showing at least. Both of these styles can trigger either interest or anger. I’ve seen people go on full tirades about both styles. We all have our triggers and what really fascinates me is how obvious they seem to me. I wonder if everyone notices them. A coworker mentioned her young son’s crazy habit of making up words. It bothers her. It frustrates her. Why? They aren’t real words. So she corrects him. That bothers me because I know that he’s developing language skills. But I didn’t say anything because I’m practicing on being quiet and minding my own business. Here are some examples of things that set people off:
trash on the floor
interrupting a conversation
cutting in traffic
an unmade bed
white shoes after labor day
pantyhose and open toed shoes
watching TV all day
Our inner rules guide us from birth to death on how we should dress and how we should act. If it’s something we’ve worked hard to master or it has value attached, it can trigger strong emotions. Most interesting is what our triggers say about our values. Take a look at behaviors that most consider good behaviors for example:
combing your hair
tucking in your shirt
washing your car
eating all of your food
reading a book
travelling the world
speaking a foreign language
To the uniformed, those that do the first are bad people. Or in the least, they are considered sloppy, lazy, and worthless. The last group would be considered neat, tidy, and productive. Which ones trigger anger or pleasure in you? What value or belief is it reminding you of? I’m trying to be slower to judge and less quick to correct. For all I know the kid with the dragging pants is an excellent student with a scholarship to MIT and is just trying to fit in with the crowd.
Earlier I was eating an apple and enjoying it. I was just eating the apple, nothing else, and it was delicious. The crunch. The juice. It was a very good apple. So much of my eating has become duty. Just enjoying good food is difficult because we are all so uptight about eating healthy and not overeating. I’m right there in the mix of it also. Sitting down to eat a whole gallon of ice cream isn’t enjoying it though. That’s a compulsion.
Documenting my food intake is absolutely not my style. Of course like everything I do, I volley between a strict watch to eating whatever I want. Until I get in sync with my body though I feel I need to be aware of what I am doing. My main problem is when I start to watch, I also start to grade. I judge.
Surely there’s a better way of staying healthy. A relaxed way. Somehow to respect ourselves and respect our food. With honor. I know that sounds goofy and all new age, but there is some truth in there. The current way is to tighten and clench. Try harder. Work out more. And that goes against everything I feel. It is what is wrong with society. Tougher rules and stricter laws. I’m not an anarchist by any means, but there is just only so much that another rule can do. What happens if you beat a dead horse? Your arm gets tired. Only that. He can’t go any faster. He’s dead.
To me, when I get in those situations where I’ve buckled down and tightened up and can’t discipline myself any more, I know that I’m needing a new approach. Something isn’t right about the current one. If it’s not working, try something else.
So I want to try something else in regards to being healthy, but what? Counting calories? Exercise? Well here’s an original, accepting myself as I am. Hmmm, I’m not a big fan of that. Actually that one scares me the most. I read somewhere that the thing that scares you the most is the thing that needs to be done. I wonder if that is true? Somewhere in all of my efforts I need to know when enough is enough. But I’m not sure if it is yet. I have another hoorah! left in me.
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