Back in February, I said I was going to write some thoughts on “The Taoist vs. Social interpretations of integrity, 2012’s turning, sage’s knowledge, noself and nonaction”.
Above is the first section, because I’ve been meaning to write more about these issues.
I’m naming these posts “enchantments”. For no other reason than my like of the word. So – instalment one, is about choices, responsibility, and parenting.
Reading a blog piece on choices, it occurred to me that I’ve not really explored this area in my own writing. I’ve known, probably for the last year or so that when people tell me something “isn’t my fault” – I can usually point out that, although I may not be able to control certain actions, I can control their REactions.
Take a bad example from this morning. At about 11:30am (the post is flipping late these days) I received a letter from my University saying I needed to choose some electives from a list of choices, and return it in the envelope provided by the 11th.
It’s the 8th today. The pre-paid envelope is only a second class stamp. If I posted it TODAY, it’s only got a 50% chance of getting there by the 11th. Having had an extremely emotional night last night and a nightmare this morning; I did not handle it well.
But, after the first 10-15 minutes of swearing at them in my head and making a mental note to ask them to give people more time next year, I got down to reading all the blurbs, and choosing some courses. I also added up the book prices and paid for that. It was all in the post box by about 2pm.
For me, a teenager under stresses that are abnormal for me – I feel I handled it well. Especially compared to my past.
I know now not to take it as a personal attack, but every now and again, every human is going to slip up, to forget, to act irrationally. And that’s a part of life. Especially this weekend, in my opinion, but that’s neither here nor there.
At the end of the blog post linked above, she speaks of children learning to “make better choices”. In a recent article in Psychologies magazine, the subject of raising children to work hard was addressed. The discussion ended by suggesting that when a child does well, the parents are advised to congratulate them on putting a lot of effort in.
Personally, I think to praise a child for trying hard is better than for achieving. By the time I got to a private secondary school, I didn’t bother trying. I could happily coast along getting B’s for the 5 years I was there.
Suddenly, college came along – and while everyone else had spent 5 years learning and teaching themselves because their teachers didn’t teach well (or didn’t teach in a way that those students could learn), I’d done nothing. I’d found a spirituality, but hadn’t looked at the real world. It was a big ego kick, and I realised they’d all got smarter, and I was at the same level as when I took that entrance exam at 11 years old.
My granddad told me I was bright and would go to Cambridge and marry a rich man etc. Lets just say I didn’t.
So when my other half and his parents congratulated me on working hard for the grades in coursework and such, I found it easier to work harder.
This was a bit scattered, but the next posts should be a little more objective. Then again, they may not be.