No one ever died from uncomfortable

My good friend, Lyn Messersmith, authored today’s guest blog and graciously granted me permission to share. It appeared in her weekly newspaper column, The Lay of the Land, way back in 2014. I found it in an old box of clippings and I think it is still timely today.

Try it; who knows, it might work

“There is a principle which is a bar against all information, which is proof against all arguments, and which cannot fail to keep a man in everlasting ignorance. That principle is contempt prior to investigation.”

—Herbert Spencer

My long list of Nevers has gotten shorter. Everything I ever let go of has bloody claw marks all over it, but stopping the resistance always opens a door to blessings. That being said, my head still feeds me a lot of garbage. It has been reported, quite accurately, that the mind is a dangerous place to go alone, but my mind wants me to resist that concept, too. It tells me I don’t need to forego junk food, exercise daily, or ask for advice.

I’m pretty sure we all have a Never List, and that’s not all bad. Nevers can be helpful in forming values and setting boundaries. Choosing never to abuse or tolerate abuse, never to engage in character assassination or behavior that harms our bodies, is commendable. But too often when I say, “I’d never do that,” I’m judging others rather than trying to understand their situation, or resisting the very tool that would solve my own dilemma.

Most of us have probably made one or more of the following comments:

“I’ll never vote for a Democrat/Republican!”

“You’ll never catch me at one of those meetings.”

“I’ll give up a lot of things, but chocolate won’t be one of them.”

“I’ll figure this out on my own. Counselors are just out to take your money.”

“It’ll be fine in a day or so. Likely it’s not broken. Can’t get any work done in a cast.”

“No kid of mine will ever . . .”

It’s a given that anyone who has children has used that last one. Go ahead, fill in the blank. “Smoke, drink, cuss, talk back, get in trouble with the law . . .” Admit it. Just like me, you said it pre-investigation. (Before you had kids.)

Well, surprise. They probably will, and probably because you do or did. They may, even if you never, because we all get to make our own list, and humans seem unlikely to learn from the mistakes of others.

Few of us begin seeking change until the present situation becomes intolerable. Very little of my life is intolerable, still, there’s this tentative Never List in the back of my mind.

Open minds lead to better lives, but you can be certain that personal growth will elicit responses from those who share our journeys. It’s great when someone notices I’ve lost a few pounds, or become nicer to be around, but less gratifying if an argument ensues because my investigations have led me to express a point of view that differs from my nearest and dearest.

Sometimes, life gets uncomfortable. Thankfully, no one ever died from uncomfortable.

#neversaynever #investigate #lettinggo #lifehack

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