Saturday, December 07, 2013
Ten Things We Hate to Admit Are True
By OFW editor:
Published: August 30, 2013
We’re our own worst enemy. How many times have you said that about someone? I’ve said it many times, but rarely am I talking about myself. The truth is most of us are our own worst enemies, and it’s completely normal. Human beings are supposed to mistakes, and we instinctively try to hide them. But hey, as long as you can admit the truth to yourself, that’s all that matters. Here are a few things most people hate to admit, but they’re true nonetheless. I like that word “nonetheless.” It’s like three words for the price of one. We should use it more.
1. When things go wrong, we blame others.
And it’s usually at least partly our fault. We know it, but when the shit hits the fan, that old self-preservation instinct kicks in and we look for a scapegoat. It’s normal. Don’t feel bad. If the fault is ours, we try to shift it immediately to someone else or we defend ourselves by pointing out someone else's faults. We can’t help it. If we can make others believe they’re worse, then we’re not so bad, right? I’ve noticed that the traits we hate the most in others are often part of our own personality. They might be things we fight because we know they’re weaknesses, but they’re there. Think about it.
2. We’re wrong at least 90 percent of the time.
But we just can’t admit it. I mean, who wants to actually be wrong that often? Our ego just can’t handle it, so we insist that we’re right. I mean, unless it’s basic facts, who’s going to prove otherwise?
3. We’re not in control but we are responsible.
No one is in control of their life. No one. It’s common to feel like a helpless victim in Fate’s cruel game, so many of us make excuses and blame external forces for our mistakes and unhappiness. Life can make things difficult, but how we respond to external events is what determines our happiness or unhappiness. Two people can live through the exact same situation and come out with a totally different perspective. You might not control the external shit, but you are responsible for yourself. If you expect bad shit to happen, it will. If you believe things will improve, then better things will come simply because your mind is open enough to recognize them when they arrive. Really, it’s that simple.
4. We don’t know what will make us happy.
We all have lists of things we’d like. I’d like to publish books and I’d like to have things and I’d like my kids to never want for anything. But would I be happier than I am now? Probably not. Other want will replace the wants I have now and I’ll still believe I’m discontent. It’s human nature to always want more, and we have no idea how much is enough. True happiness comes from within, and most of us are too busy grasping at the shit on the outside to notice that hey, life is pretty frigging good as it is right now.
5. We are attracted to the negative
We instinctively gravitate to negative things. It's just how our brains work. Think about it. We remember mistakes far longer than good deeds or successes. We remember others’ faults far easier than we remember their good traits. Bad news stays with us. Good news seems to slip through. Some people realize, though, that there is a bigger picture. Spending too many hours yanking the weeds leaves you little time to smell the flowers. Oh yeah, I can be all positive and shit.
6. We can’t change others.
We know this, and yet we still try, because if we can change those people we want to love, we can make life better because our loving them will make sense. Then it’s a nasty cycle of resentment and frustration and self-loathing. If we’d just admit that we can’t change others, life would be easier, wouldn’t it? Inspire, support, encourage and motivate them, but change? No, that’s not your responsibility. Also, it’s exhausting. Who wants to be exhausted?
7. Our stress is self-induced.
You feel busy. I feel busy. But let’s examine why we’re busy. We all create the things we have to do in our daily lives. We choose our job, our chores, our responsibilities, and we choose the stresses that result from those things. Most of the tasks we are so adamant must be done are simply not that important. God forbid we admit that though. The floors must be cleaned. The car must be washed. The kids must be bathed. The story must be finished. That’s your ego talking. If you step back and consciously focus on what’s necessary and what’s not worth the stress, you’ll find time to relax. Believe it or not, very few people are going to notice that you knocked some shit off your list.
8. The success of others is frustrating.
We might be truly happy for them, but hearing about the success of others, when we’re still sitting here waiting for our boat to arrive, is really annoying. No, we can’t admit it, because then we might have to admit that we’re selfish. When did a bit of selfishness become such a bad thing?
9. Sometimes we pick our nose.
Didn’t see that one coming did you? Every adult has picked their nose once. No, deny it because I simply won’t believe you. I know you have. Sometimes there just isn’t another option. It’s gross, yes. But it’s not a sin. Now, what you do with the boogers after you’ve mined them might be questionable.
10. We lie.
And it’s not a bad thing. White lies can be harmless. Sometimes they can be more helpful than the truth. The trouble most folks have is determining the difference between a lie that is for the greater good and one that just benefits them.
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