Every now and then the whirring gears in my mind screech to a halt. Several things can cause that to happen. One is when I get the strong impression that someone with whom I am interacting doesn’t see me as a human being.
To them I am a thing. A tool. An object designed to help them with an objective. A source of information like the internet. A service provider similar to an ATM, a vending machine, Siri or Alexa, an AI system which is supposed to do what they want it to do for them, a robot.
Sometimes I don’t mind being seen and used that way if it serves a purpose for me too. If I get something out of it as they’re getting something out of it, then it’s okay.
It only becomes a problem when I’m getting nothing out of someone else getting something out of me.
The problem is solved by recognising that this is how I’m experiencing the dynamic. If I keep going I’m going to blow a fuse. I’ll become the hammer that bashes the thumb of the wielder. So it’s time to make a conscious decision and change things to suit myself.
The excerpt below is from an excellent post which perfectly captured the train of my thoughts:
The long-suffering grade school Room Mother receives an early morning phone call from a More Important Parent with no time to bake cookies; surely Long-Suffering Room Mother can do it for her!
The overworked IT guy, feverishly attending to the needs of thirty staff members and sixty temperamental machines, gets an impromptu visit from his supervisor, who needs help–urgently!–with her personal email account.
The long-suffering astrologer, whose wages barely place him above the national poverty line, gets yet another epic email from someone detailing every problem in her life and insisting the astrologer read her chart for free, because hers is such a worthy and exceptional cause.
And suddenly, the Virgo volcano erupts. Like all earth signs, Virgo has a long fuse… which makes its eventual meltdowns all the more impressive and kind of scary.
And because Virgo is ruled by Mercury, he or she can carve you up with an estimable blend of withering sarcasm and impressive vocabulary choices.
And then, of course, it’s Virgo– the unappreciated, overworked, underpaid gaffer on the set of everybody else’s big-budget motion picture–who is the bad guy.
And if you’ve ever done a favor that went unacknowledged or picked up the slack for someone who took advantage of your kindness, that “Virgo” has been you. Is it any wonder so few of us are willing to go the extra mile to help another person?excerpt from Virgo Full Moon: To Serve Man by April Elliot Kent’s Big Sky Astrology
It also goes with this week’s Share Your World in a subtle manner. Melanie took over this blogging community activity from Cee who decided to stop doing it.
Creating and running blogging challenges and prompts requires a lot of work, dedication, and time. When WordPress shut down The Daily Post, a lot of bloggers who relied on it were upset, furious, felt let down, abandoned… what would they do now, where could they find inspiration to keep their blogs going.
A few bloggers stepped into the breach and… found out just how hard it is to keep that kind of activity going and going and going.
As Fandango pointed out in his post: This, That and the Other: Dropping Like Flies
Melanie is keeping Share Your World going for us. Thank you very much, Melanie, you are an amazing member of this weird and wonderful community!
Melanie of Sparks From A Combustible Mind’s Share Your World 2-18-19
If you didn’t have to sleep, what would you do with the extra time?
Probably falling down internet holes like this one:
What job would you be terrible at?
Running a blogging community activity, such as Melanie’s Share Your World, Fandango’s Provocative Questions and other prompts, Rory’s quizzes and challenges, etc.
I’d start off with lots of excitement, enthusiasm, and energy, and then give up after about a couple of weeks… if I even lasted that long.
I’d be too Italian about it.
When was the last time you climbed a tree?
With or without a ladder?
Without a ladder – not since I hit puberty and found that my bottom suddenly weighed a tonne.
As a pre-pubescent child I loved climbing as high as I could get and just sitting up in the tree looking out at the world. My favourite tree to climb was a large Mimosa when it was in bloom – the sight, scent, and feel of Mimosa blossom is transcendental.
With a ladder – last Spring to prune the lower branches of a tree.
Do you count your steps?
What’s the dumbest way you’ve injured yourself?
Physically, mentally or emotionally?
Physically – my body is a map of stupid shit I’ve done scars and bumps. I have a scar on my chin from using it to break my fall, on two separate occasions, when I slipped while tightrope walking on a banister.
Mentally – whenever I think someone else knows me better than I know myself, knows my life better than I know it, knows what I should be doing better than I do, and I listen to them.
Emotionally – whenever I feel that I would be better off dead, nobody gives a shit about me anyway, it wouldn’t matter if I disappeared.
Affirmations and uplifting things?
During my late teens and early 20’s I was in constant existential crisis mode.
I tried many cures for it, one of which entailed getting caught up in the New Age and Self-Help movement. I read a lot of those books which claimed that Positive Thinking and Affirmations could solve all your ailments. I also attended workshops given by the people who wrote those books.
I eventually realised that kind of cure wasn’t for me. Positive affirmations focused my attention too much on the negative. I wouldn’t have needed the power of positive thinking if I was a genuinely positive person living a happy life. Every time I used one I felt like I was putting a tiny colourful unicorn bandaid on a gaping, profusely bleeding, stab wound.
I prefer things like this:
Your quest, and your healing mission, is to find your true self; your most personally valid state of being and of expression. This is easily said, and not so easily (or so often) done. The reason is that in order to be who you are, it’s necessary to set aside or cast off anything and everything that you are not.
Most people you meet are heavily invested in not-self. To the extent that you struggle with being yourself and with making choices that work for you, you are likely to be invested in not-self. If you knowingly do things that don’t work for you, and associate with people who do not support you, those are signs of investment in not-self.
Let’s use a metaphor: honesty. People like to talk about being honest, and sometimes strive to be so. Yet in order to be honest, one must confront all the things one was dishonest about in the past.
Honesty requires reckoning with the current state of one’s relationships, and would likely require shaking all of them up. This is seen as dangerous, and potentially painful. Were you to suddenly become transparent and honest about everything in your life, you would be taking a big risk, or so it would seem. People might get upset. They might not want to be associated with you. That is the risk of actually expressing yourself.
Yet Chiron in Aries is going to demand no less. This will begin with being honest with yourself, aware of yourself, aware of your interactions with others down to the most detailed level. To do this, you will be taken on a tour of all the ways that your awareness has been suppressed, that you’ve allowed yourself to be held down, and all the ways you’ve compromised and held yourself back. This can lead to a crisis.excerpt from Planet Waves: Chiron in Aries – Where to Start? by Amanda Painter
Things which encourage me to think for myself, which provoke my thoughts, make me self-reflect and consider my part in my experience of life, being human, relationships, etc.
Things which inspire me to heal the inner wounds properly by investigating and understanding them rather than trying to pretend they’re not there and plastering them over with pretty pictures.
When the whirring gears in my mind screech to a halt… it’s time to stop and think about what’s going on and why.
When you take care of yourself first and foremost, taking care of others becomes a pleasure rather than a pain. And they don’t have to take care of you, which frees them up to take better care of themselves.
Take care of yourself, Melanie, and thank you for being you as is, no need to apply colourful unicorn bandaids to yourself ❤