The Age of Irresponsibility

I regret to announce to those who have missed the calls of the harbingers, the omens written in their day-to-day lives, and the signs in every newspaper in the known world – The Age of Irresponsibility is upon us.

Don’t get me wrong – there have been irresponsible people in every era of human existence.  They have been called by many labels – lazy, entitled, promiscuous, spoiled, dead-beat, and many other names that separate them from the norm of responsibility.  But in the subjective age in which we now live, we have been invited to consider and have heartily accepted and gone overboard with the consideration for the “other side”.  Psychology has pointed to reasons in nature and nurture that lead to characters developing along irresponsible lines.  Because we now have reasons we find ourselves excusing the behaviours.  And with the words “lazy”, “dead-beat”, “irresponsible” and “promiscuous” being classified under the headling “judgmental”, the responsible among us avoid calling it like it is.  What follows is that those with latent tendencies toward – yup I’m calling it – laziness and disrespect see the stigma removed and sign up to the growing list of the irresponsible at a rate of thousands per minute.

But what, I hear you wonder, is irresponsibility?  What does it mean?  What does it look like?

Bushy’s definition is that irresponsibility is a failure to fulfill one’s obligations and to keep one’s word.  It comes from a selfish, unnecessary and reckless disregard for the needs and the feelings of others.

I hate to draw a sexist example, but guys you make it so damn easy.  Ladies.  When was the last time a guy in your life said to you “I’ll be there at 8” and showed up at 8:30 without a phone call?  Or how about the last time a guy in your life said “I’ll be there at 8” and didn’t show up at all?  If you say nothing, isn’t it remarkable how your next conversation (and there are questions in my mind as to whether or not there SHOULD be a next conversation) goes without any apology for your lost 30 minutes or your ruined evening?  That, my love, is irresponsibility.

Let’s take another example.  We all have at least one ditzy woman in our lives who consistently does stupid things.  For example, sleep around.  Yes… I could have used a guy example here as well but some things are just TOO easy.  She lets herself intervene over and over and over as the rebound (“But he said he was over it!”) or she may have a tendency to go for the ones who are already quite married to someone else (“But his wife is SUCH a b****).  What refrain do you hear from her as a reason (**cough-EXCUSE-cough***) for her behaviour?  “But Busy you don’t understand.  I LOVE him!”, “I can’t help it if his wife is a bitter old woman”, and most common and bloody irritating “You can’t control who you fall in love with.”

Well I’ma call it.  That is BULLSHIT.

Everyone has choices to make every single day of our lives.  We choose what we eat.  We choose how much we exercise.  We choose when to go to the bathroom.  We choose whether or not to pick up the phone and cancel an appointment we cannot make.  We choose whether or not we spread our legs to this man or that.  We choose whether we will go out and find a job.  We choose whether or not we complete our studies.  We choose what behaviours and what people we expose ourselves to and what feelings we allow ourselves to dwell on.  We choose where we are every minute of every day.

If I were to make a practice of irresponsibility my world would fall apart.  My staff would suffer, my family would suffer, I would lose the roof over my head and be dependent on someone else for the food on my plate.  How is it that others escape this fate?  Have I signed up for that much more responsibility?  Is there something wrong with me?  Maybe I should try this out and see if life is easier that way.

This is the thinking that has led to irresponsibility being the new normal.

I worry for the next generation.  Irresponsibility doesn’t travel like an STD, passing on from mother to child and with exchange of body fluids.  This bad boy catches like the flu.

Have you been immunized?

Classic irresponsible statements:

“She told me she was ok with just sex.”  She’s a woman dumbass.  And you knew this.

“I can’t help it!”  Then who the hell can?

“You don’t understand!  Marriage is very complicated.”  I didn’t tell you to sign up for it.  But you did.  So deal.

“I fell asleep.”  Don’t wake up next time.

“Ohhh… you were waiting?”  Oh yeah… but never again.

“But his wife treats him so badly!”  I’m sure she knows why.

“She’s just a friend.”  Uh huh…

“You just want to control me.”  Actually no… I don’t trust you to control yourself.

“You just don’t understand what I’m going through.”  You mean what you’re PUTTING YOURSELF through?  No.  You’re right.  I do not understand.

And my favourite.  One line that, if said too many times for the same offense makes the hearer want to carve the words in stone and shove them down an irresponsible throat.

“I’m sorry.”

So am I, luv.  So am I.

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Opening old wounds

I can’t believe how raw this post today has made me… how naked it makes my heart feel.

But it turns out that the heart is still there, beating under layers and layers of scars.  Perhaps it is better to let sleeping dogs lie, let the scars be, and the fresh scabs become keloid.  It certainly would be easier.  Healing hurts too much!  And it isn’t guaranteed.  Is it?

A wise friend and I spoke recently about pain.  He has studied James with me and we have spoken at length about Considering it Joy.  He has found himself in a place of total brokenness – his body, his work, his family, his reputation, all broken.

But in it he has found peace.

I explained to him that I am completely unaware of any other way of dealing with pain other than attacking or running.  The fight or flight in me is strong when it comes to pain.  There is no middle ground.  Or is there?

He said to me embrace the pain.  Be with it.  Ride it out and let it take you to the lesson.

Hmmmm ok.  I kinda reacted with a flip mmm hmm.  But he didn’t move.  He meant it.  Savor every emotion.  Get to know it and let it know you.  He patiently waited for it to sink in to me.

Embrace it, eh?  Will give it a try before I trash the idea.

Today is a step in that direction.

INTRODUCING: My Book

My writing corner: Good view, good company, good coffee, and a funny pen that drives the dogs mad…

My dearest Readers, I am finally feeling able to talk about my book.  For followers of this blog from the very beginning, I must clarify this is not the same book that I began when we first met.  Late last year I tried my hand at some fiction writing and found myself writing more of my opinions on this blog to make up for what I REALLY wanted to say.  No, no, no it will not be fiction.  This year I began something else and have rolled down a hill like a snowball full of ideas.

Will give you my elevator speech and ask you kindly for some accountability, as I’m in a bit of a rut.  But a GOOD one.  You ever have something to write that you’ve worked out in your head and you can’t wait to start and then when you pick up the pen you don’t know where to start?  Well this happens to me EVERY TIME I pick up the pen.  I sit to write Chapter 1 and I end up spending 3,000 words worth of time down in Chapter 6.  I sit to finish Chapter 6 and instead find myself itching to be in Chapter 3.  It’s a bit insane and I’m so eager and in love with the subject matter I want to gobble it all up at once!

The result has been an overwhelm that stops me from picking up the pen because I don’t want the mind to play tug of war with 9 corners rooting for 9 separate chapters at once.  It’s tiring!  Can you imagine the little elves in my head pulling the strings on the brain fighting to win for their chapter?

 (Cue any advice from actually experienced writers – anything you can do to help me make sense of this?!)

But having actual material that I love so much means it will be getting the best of me.  Once I can quiet the elves and give them the talking stick to go one at a time.  It is something I believe in and something I have preached and had validated over and over up on my soapbox for years – the information contract.

The premise is that we are all owners and creators of information.  We are also generators of information.  But what information is mine?  And what information is yours?  And how do I handle what is mine and what you have given me that is still yours?  What are the terms of the agreements that we form about the handling of the information we share?  What should our boundaries be?  What terms should dominate the agreements of each context – the contexts of our relationships, our work places, our friendships?  How should we work with information in these places?  Very importantly, what should we do when our boundaries have been trespassed past?

In an age where information is a tool, a weapon, and the source of income for the largest magnates of the world, why would we not be conscious of our own information?

There.  Elevator speech.  Are you sold?  Is it something you would read?  Do you see anything I can do to help me get past the noise in my head?  I am SO EXCITED by this stuff!

Long weekend ahead – I have some extra time to dedicate to sorting out information – my information – for the book on information.

Have a great weekend all!

I AM NOT ASHAMED

You know… there have been times on this blog that I’ve choked on something I’ve written out of rum-soaked pain. I’ve regretted saying and writing the things that were destroying me inside.

Today I went back and un-protected the passworded bits of poison. The coin has two sides and I am not ashamed. There have been battles and bruises and bludgeoning in this war toward my authentic self and the opposition has been surprising – internal and external.  To disguise the wrong would be to hide who I really am and be just as much a hypocrite as I have fought hard not to be.

Welcome to the Singlestream. Home to a woman called Bushlings who accepts that she is flawed and is no longer ashamed to feel.

Have a wonderful day with yourself! I’ll be doing me right alongside you doing you. LOVE IT.

Breakup Checklist

Every single woman needs one.  In fact, every single human being needs one.  Because if you are operating in today’s world you will come across false starts.  And they will hurt.

A friend of mine going through a heart-rending divorce shared with me in a facebook conversation some years ago what he calls his Breakup Checklist.  I have asked his permission to share his insights.

THE CHECKLIST

“#1. Pull together your “support team” of family and friends who can help you deal with this crisis. These are the insiders who know you, know your Ex and can talk you through everything.  These are the people who will pick up the phone at all hours of the day to allow you to express your sorrow, remind you of your self worth. Put your team together and get their support.

#2 Find a counselor.  Your friends can be there for you, but they have lives of their own and they are not professionals. Hire a professional who can talk to you about the situation and help you sort things out clinically. Help you to understand yourself, your inner demons, and why the relationship fell apart. They can asses whether you are just sad or clinically “depressed” and in need of temporary medication (nothing wrong with that).  Note: counselors are great! But do your homework. find one that is highly recommended.  Sometimes the most expensive ones are the best. They can afford to charge those prices. The cheaper ones are desperate for clients.

#2b -Face your new reality – Part of the problem with not having these written down is that you forget some things.  Right around the time you are meeting with a counselor, that counselor should be helping you face your new reality. This bad situation is happening! Your worst fear is real. You can’t go back. you can’t change it. You have to face it head on and deal with it.  Stare the dragon in eye and let him know you are not afraid. For me, this was realizing that my wife IS cheating on me. It wasnt a one time thing. She made a conscious decision. There is no going back. It can’t be undone. Why am I hiding the truth from people? In hopes that I can keep it quiet and take her back after she is done with the other guy? Get real. “When someone takes an opportunity to show you who they really are….BELIEVE THEM!!!!!”

#3 Get Busy – Start filling your days with activities that will distract you from what is going on with you. You should “pre-schedule” these events.  Start planning trips, vacations, classes (art, martial arts, athletic related, etc), visits to friends, shopping trips. Fill up your schedule. Consider this the equivalent of a cast on a broken arm.  Distract yourself while your heart is healing.

Take care of YOU!!!! You will heal by LOVING YOURSELF and NOT HATING the other person.

#4 – Have you phoned God? – get your spiritual life together. Maybe all of this happened because God has been trying to get your attention and you haven’t been listening. Start spending more time in church, prayer, and meditation.

#5 – Do some emotional housecleaning. You need to conduct an emotional assessment of where you are. Are you angry? Hurt? Depressed?  There is a time for anger in the healing process, but Anger will only take you so far and it WON’T get you to the finish line. You need to start focusing on more positive emotions – FORGIVENESS, peace, calm, happiness (step #3 activities should bring smiles and happiness into your life). Ask God to help you release your anger. Ask God to help you forgive. You would be surprised how much forgiveness and releasing anger will help YOU feel better. Holding a grudge is like drinking poison and waiting for the other person to die…… (think that will work?).

#6 Start Taking Care of Yourself – Focus on your new life – ALONE. And do what you need to do to move forward. Have you been talking about finding a new job? do it. Thinking about moving to a new country/state? do it.  Do it for yourself.  Treat yourself to the things you like. Spa day. Exercise. (Note: keep it healthy and positive. Don’t soothe yourself with sweets and dessert. You will only hate yourself later when you get fat) That flight to see your friends? Buy yourself an upgrade. Take care of YOU!!!! You will heal by LOVING YOURSELF and NOT HATING the other person.”

How do you handle breakups?  What would you add to this list?

The Science of Motivation

This video came to me through a CEO Training Workshop put on by a fascinating Business Coaching company called Shirlaws.  I don’t usually do free advertising but I must credit this company of coaches for helping me discovery amazing truths about myself and about how I manage myself in business.