Saturday, September 17, 2011

A First Rate Revision

As soon as I published that last one I thought, "They'll take me to the mat."
( ENT, A First Rate Madness). But no one did.

You should have.

This is in reference to the parting shot,
That’s what I tell those young people . . . the ones who can’t do their homework; the ones who can’t make their brains go where everyone else's brains, those ordinary brains, have no problem going. Think, greatness. . .
A lie. My advice always has been, and will continue to be in step with the ordinary, the homoclites of my profession. Given an opening, we

encourage kids to meet their personal, their unique potential. Of course.
encourage them to strive to excel, to find their talent and work it. You bet.
encourage them to dream of fame, fortune and greatness. No dream, no reality.

But when we advise those under the influence of a touch of genetic excess, when they're high and they don't even know it, it's more like,
Think greatness, qualified
What we tell the hyperthymics, the hypomanics, those who suffer manic episodes, young and old, age is immaterial, what we say is nothing short of
Think greatness, aspire to greatness, but. . .
Listen to others when they are telling you to slow down.

Pay attention when more than one person is giving you the same message, especially a message you don't want to hear.

Worry when you and your plan, your genius, are the only thing you have been thinking about for several hours, to the exclusion of everyone else, everything else. Come back to the rest of us for awhile, bounce ideas around.

Think greatness, but love the ordinary, and never think, They don't matter.  What they think, what they say, does matter.  

Never say to yourself, I'm right The rest of them are crazy.  Could be, but what are the odds?  Seriously, what are the odds they are all crazy?

Question yourself when you have a lone opinion.  Think, Is what I'm pushing for really good for everyone? And even if it is, if they all disagree with you, is there anything to be gained in losing them in the power struggle?  (Relationship therapists frown upon cut-offs, assume the more friends, the better. Those who give in, who don't need to be right, who let others be right, have more friends.)

Think greatness but take criticism, welcome it, encourage feedback. We're all works in progress, and we all want to be special. But more important, making others feel worthy, valuing their thoughts and opinions, is a goes around, comes around thing. Valuing others is what makes people great.

The geniuses in my first paragraph of that post on September 16, are only happy if they have friends.

I tell them: If you follow those rules, if you take it on the chin when others tell you to chill, to listen, to pay more attention to them than to your insistent thoughts, then . . .

should you become President of the United States, or CEO; should you have it in you to become the next Martin Luther King or Mahatma Gandhi; then Yes! You will have the option of running the show, working your program, casting that deciding vote, taking the risks that will change the course of history (and if not you, then who?) And when that happens, others will say,
I voted for her!

I voted for him! 

I worked for her!

I knew him.

What a great person, too. Truly, a great person.


1 comment:

Mound Builder said...

Because you said we should have taken you to the mat, I went back and read the post to which you referred. Interesting for a variety of reasons. As my siblings and I grew up, my mother who was a great believer in the value of psychotherapy, often told us to trust our feelings. What she didn't take into account, probably couldn't have known for many years, was that one of my siblings is bipolar, diagnosed, eventually. At one of the first points where it was clear that something was wrong, my sibling said to me, with a sense of despair, it seemed, "How can I trust my feelings?" We'd been told, for some good reasons, to learn to pay attention to what we felt. But that was failing my sibling entirely. Our mother certainly didn't intend to do that, didn't intend to handicap my sibling. But it had that effect. And what you described about the empathy, when my sibling is functioning well, can be so sweet, so caring. But when spiraling out, has a hard time believing anything other than what sibling's views/thoughts/feelings are as being the only truth. It can feel very very treacherous trying to talk to sibling under those circumstances. It can be hard to get sibling to listen. Seems like what I have to do is tread very carefully, and leave lots of space in communication, like days, to get things to slow down. It doesn't feel good, because it feels like being attacked and sibling can't believe sibling has done anything that would be frightening or upsetting. What you wrote helps me understand better, even if it may not make much difference in how I act in relation to sibling. Maybe it will help relieve me some of the feeling I have done something wrong, have caused things to derail.