Monday, January 07, 2008

Living in Interesting Times

There was a short space years ago, assigned to a relatively small unit of about ten officers and only me and my friend were not going through a divorce.  In the space of about four months, that was an 80% divorce rate.  Not having the social graces of an average rock, I started asking people, "Did you marry the wrong person or did you just fail to make it work?"  How's that for sensitivity?
Most wanted to talk anyway, so it worked out and I did learn a lot. Mostly about how people saw problems, where they placed blame, what they felt were their limits of control over their world... what Kai calls agency.
(aside- I just figured out how to link.  I used to wonder what the 'frog with sunglasses' icon was on the dashboard.  My lovely wife explained that it was a globe and a pair of chain links. I'm a goof.)
I think I learned more about C and myself, the two who weren't getting divorced.  We saw the world as manageable challenges.  We both have extreme, maybe outrageous beliefs in ourselves and our ability to shape and adapt to our world.  We both thrive on taking any situation but particularly a very bad one and making it better.
Reading Epictetus again and he keeps repeating that you deal with the part of your universe that you can control (you) and don't whine about the rest.  Fix it if you want it fixed.  Being able to control one variable and being conscious of what you can and can't affect is great power...
There's something in that which allows you to turn big setbacks into long term gains.  There is momentum in every fall.  There is a lesson in every injustice.  Even betrayals bring freedom.

2008 promises to be a banner year.


Loudernhel said...

I thought it looked like a frog with sunglasses too.

I wonder if I can get business cards that say "former thug that thinks alot?"



Kai Jones said...

Even betrayals bring freedom.
Of course; someone who is trying to manage your information flow (by lying to you, or concealing something) constrains your choice field.

I hope the change this year brings you lets you play.