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Friday, October 19, 2012

Careful What You Like

The ongoing theme of this week's conversations has been, "You are what you like." Which gets into some deep areas. Likes that turn into habits and addictions. Likes that limit one's options and even whole life. And that maybe the story of getting down and straightening out our baggage in life is looking at what we like and why we like it. Because habits, good or bad, are things we like. We're big creatures of habit. We'll pick our priorities by our likes. And if our priorities are bad for us, there'll be trouble. Whether that habit/priority/addiction/like is drugs or spending money, eating like Henry the 8th or ducking responsibilty, it will come back and bite you.

For instance, I like to stretch a dollar until you can read through it. Since I'm poor this works for me. When I wasn't poor this same trait irritated my husband to no end. But I like being a tightwad. I get to do a lot more in the long run if I count the pennies, do the work instead of the easy way, use my head instead of my wallet. But, what's necessary in one situation is not appropriate in another. It caused conflict in my marriage. If it causes trouble, living like you're dirt poor when you aren't can be as wrong as living like you've got money when you don't. I have physical reactions to spending any chunk of money, while my husband could walk out the door and back in an hour later having spent several hundreds of dollars. Eventually I learned to pry the pursestrings open more but thankfully I kept my living poor skills in a jar.

Whatever you like you will do and create. If you like chaos, you will create it. If you like drama, you will create it. Likes can work as motivations you aren't even aware of having or acting on. But whatever you do a lot, it's what you like. Whether that's whining, bitching, laughing, getting in the middle of things you don't have to be in, staying away from people, overextending yourself, whatever. Examine what you do and you'll find what you really do like. If any of that doesn't work or causes trouble, you can change. But you'll have to learn to dislike the bad likings in order to change or it won't last.

This is probably all obvious stuff to a lot of people, it's just common sense. But among the folks I've been conversing with this week, it's pretty new to us. Our parents didn't tell us these things. Who stops to think about these things? Life is busy. But it's good to stop and do some reality checks on yourself. And you could grow to like it. ;)


Geo. said...

"...or ducking responsibility." There are times to duck and times not to. Much of my appearance is not from natural aging but from thinking too long about which action to take. Excellent post.

The Elephant's Child said...

And every so often I stop and do a kind of personal audit - just to check whether I am becoming the type of person I would rather not know. Better to nip that in the bud as quickly as possible.

Anonymous said...

Some heavy food for thought this morning.

Austan said...

Geo.- you do have the brow of a ponderer. :)

Austan said...

EC- that's a fine practice. We should all keep an eye on ourselves.

Austan said...

Lawless- Better heavy food for thought than a heavy breakfast?