The Upside of Grudges, Gossip and Giving Up

it's all good (the upside of the bad)I appreciate an encouraging message as much as the next, but many of these well-meaning suggestions give a bad rap to some of my favorite habits.

Between the pinterest boards I browse and my facebook news feed, it seems the reminders are constant about how to live a better life:

  • “find forgiveness”
  • “only speak well of others”
  • watch my language
  • never EVER give up

and on and on …

So I’m here to defend some of the things my well esteemed peers warn me against regularly, starting with:

1.  Forget forgiveness.

What do I have against forgiveness?  Two things. First, to forgive someone first requires that I’ve  judged something or someone wrong. If I’m going to put forth the effort to shift my vibe on a situation, I can probably do better than that.

Second, if I don’t allow myself a grudge because it’s not kosher to feel that way, I’m at risk of not properly owning my feelings. And we know how that turns out. (Not fab.)

Plus, I  may be bypassing some very powerful contrast! Who knows what great stuff I’m cooking up as I hold those contrasty feelings and thoughts?! Experience has taught me I get to a peaceful place way more genuinely (and swiftly, too) when I honor the grudge while it lasts. It’ll go when it’s time, and it seems to do that much better when I’m not opposed to it to start with.

So, don’t be so quick to forgive.

And another thing:

2.  Don’t watch your language.

If you’re like me, you have many well-intentioned friends telling you to “only speak what you want to create,” and use high energy language to ensure your vibration is top notch. (I’ve probably been one of those friends!)

That’s a nice theory. But real life has a different way of working out.

Here’s why I am in favor of things like gossip and swearing: to put limits on where or how we find relief can botch the system.

And sometimes, to some people, it simply feels better to say what you’re trying not to or what you know you shouldn’t – just to get it out of your system. Plus, some folks get great relief from gossip sessions, so who are we to judge what’s best? Cut a girl some slack – it just may be that a good gossip session helps her get over it and get on with life.

This “find a way to feel better” thing works way better when we don’t put rules around it, and I know lots of people get genuine relief from saying things that others might qualify as rumorus chitchat. Myself included on occasion.

Also, I’ve noticed that the times when I commit to avoiding conversations that feel gossipy is when I seem to attract/initiate them the most. (What we resist, persists!) My better plan has turned out to be “don’t be so uptight about it.”

On another note …

3.  Giving up can be good for you.

“Never EVER give up,” the sage advice goes.

But you know what?  Sometimes that routine just feeds resistance and attachment. I know lots of us have experienced letting something go as exactly the relief that was needed to get things in gear. So maybe we ought to champion those who are ready to throw in the towel!

* * *

While I’m at it, let me just give a little plug for emotional eating and drug use.

(By now you might think I’m joking, but I’m not.)

Just because someone else might think that eating for pleasure is from the devil, doesn’t mean they need to ruin it for the rest of us.

The way some experts preach vigilance about only eating when you’re really truly legitimately physically hungry, makes me think they have something against the benefits of ‘comfort food.’ If they want to believe that eating to feel better ruins us, then more power to them – but don’t drag the rest of us along for that ride. We have fantastically powerful bodies – when we don’t block them with limiting beliefs.

(And I know most women do have those limiting beliefs, so don’t get crazy with yourself if you’re heavily invested in them.)

I’m not recommending using food as a sole method of feeling good – I think it’s great to have LOTS of ways to enjoy life and feel better. If food is one of them, enjoy! Your body will tell you what it appreciates; you can trust it without regulating it via externally imposed rules.

That goes for alcohol, too.  When I find myself the kind of wound up that makes a better feeling thought completely elusive – sometimes I take a dog walk, sometimes I take a nap, and sometimes I pop a beer. Not very often do I fall back on the alcohol trick, but it is a guaranteed effective one for me to loosen up and relax tight thoughts.

Abraham’s soothing words to someone who is addicted?  “Don’t worry too much about it.” (Because we know where worry and judgment take us!)

More than anything, I’m saying let’s not have too many rules for ourselves, or too many things we push against. Let’s instead honor where our own inner guidance takes us, and where someone else’s takes them; trusting that inner guidance knows best, and living it free of limiting beliefs about what serves us and what doesn’t. That’s a huge act of self-love.

As I learned on pinterest today, it’s all good. And that includes gossip, grudges, giving up, and lots of other “unapproved” activities.

At the risk of generating an x-rated comment or two, you know I’d love to hear how you find pleasure in things you’re not “supposed” to …

  • April 22, 2012
  • Lesley Cross says:

    Wonderful food for thought, Jeanette. I am moodling on a project right now that might feel very “don’t judge, don’t criticize” and this is making me more aware of what I want for the tone of it. Which is to go deeper. Not hurt one another intentionally with criticism/judgment, but also not deny that we all have knee-jerk responses and that we can work WITH them, support each other AND find freedom for ourselves. The practice of acceptance and generosity towards others begins with acceptance and generosity towards ourselves.

  • Sarah Seidelmann says:

    Funny story about gossiping and kvetching- knowing (as you all do!) that I did not give my time /my vibe to gossiping at the recent Work gathering my colleague and I ( ok it was my hideous idea! She is more masterful and this!)decided to give ourselves 3 coupons a day – to give us the chance to “release” (lol) and share and personal interactions that had been challenging during the week- I used all 3 up the first day and then needed no more….the permission (knowing I was FREE to do the “forbidden”) was enough:). Plus as I used my coupons we were laughing hysterically and not taking it at all seriously! A-hem! I am using a coupon- please lisyen!! Follow your FEEL GOOD – even if and especially if it’s against their rules.

  • BarbaraM says:

    Amen to that Janette! 🙂

  • Janette says:

    I love this post!! Yes yes yes. Nobody gets to tell me how I ought to do ANYTHING – including expressing my contrasty moments.
    For those of us keen to ‘manage’ our vibration, I think it comes down to one simple question.
    Where is the relief?
    Let’s say a guy does the dirty on you. For you, relief might come from having a solid rant to a girlfriend, with ice-cream and some fun revenge fantasies to stoke the anger. For me, it might come from crawling into my cave and howling on my own while throwing mental crockery at the wall.
    The important thing is to embrace that…. and then ask again, where is the relief?
    Each of us finds relief in our own way; the important thing is to keep seeking it, and not get addicted to whatever mechanism we just used to get there.
    At some point continuing the rant and the revenge fantasy and the cave-dweller crockery-hurling stops feeling like relief and becomes painful, like picking at an old scar. That’s the time to seek the relief of letting it go, dropping that story, and maybe – if it feels like relief – forgiving. If that feels like relief to YOU. And I don’t get to tell you a right or wrong way to seek relief.
    We’re all free to find our own path. Nobody gets to say “do it THIS way”.
    And I LOVE that freedom!

  • Jessica says:

    Haha nice timing!!!!! You really know what you’re talking about. Today I just decided to give up trying to force a beloved friendship to work and other stuff I don’t give a shit enough to type out hahahaha. Fuck the world!!!!!! Wow, that feels awesome.

  • Lou says:

    Not sure if I’ve got the brown end of the stick on this one, however I’ve discovered that when something upsets me or pisses me off, as long as I’m ‘allowed’ to have a tantrum about it without people ‘tsking and tutting’ at me (including myself)then I get over whatever it was really quickly. Once I’ve bored myself with the tantrum, then I’m not usually nearly so bothered about whatever it was that got me miffed in the first place and I get somewhere else that feels sunny and altogehter better. It’s magic!
    It’s when I contain whatever has upset me and I don’t have a twisty-whingy or roar and stamp my feet if I feel like it, that things turn to custard and I find my annoyance or a grudge starts to fester like gangrine (ughh!) how awful then it is everso much harder to dislodge and life becomes dark and miserable and heavy and I feel as though I’m constantly battling uphill through glue.
    So I give myself to permission to feel what I feel and try not to overthink it or beat myself up about any of it.
    I’ve also discovered that things are only a big deal if you make them a big deal and that equally sometimes I DO want a big deal, and that’s ok and so am I. I don’t need fixing or healing, I’m fine as I am and so is everyone else!
    Lots of Love

  • courtney says:

    OMG I f***ing love you! 🙂

  • yeah. Good example, Stacey.
    In fact, it makes me think of how Abraham says, “You don’t want to make a career of it.”
    We don’t want to get STUCK in something, that’s for sure.

  • Stacey says:

    I agree with not putting rules on what brings relief (for yourself or others). It creates resistance.
    However, I do have a question about balance.
    I grew up with both parents addicted to drugs (both still are)– which resulted in my siblings and me being taken from the home. Their method of seeking relief– affected their children.
    I’ve forgiven (Oops, I know you said ‘forget forgiveness’ :0)) them. I realize now that they did the best they could.
    This topic reminds me of an Abraham video, “Are all drunks in Vortex?” –
    In the video Esther said to look at the reason behind using a substance to get into the Vortex. She then says, get into the vortex then have the substance…
    And Jeanette, as you alluded to– is easier said than done.
    I think I answered my own question. Nonetheless, interesting topic!

  • Lorii Abela says:

    I want to thank you for sharing this wonderful insights and thoughts.

  • Leigha says:

    Thanks Christine!!! 🙂

  • Ambaa says:

    This is so helpful to hear. I get upset with myself when I accidentally think something negative and it just spirals out of control from there.
    And I’m really tired of the stuff going around FB on “T.H.I.N.K” before you speak. When I was growing up we were told to moderate our speech by deciding if what we were about to say were necessary. Well, it was easy for me to define almost nothing as necessary. So I was not socializing well, not small talking, not getting to know people because nothing seemed “necessary” to say!

  • jennifer says:

    love it!!! living ‘outside the box’ so i don’t end up in one too early, because its the stress of worrying about it all that will do it! thank you, jeannette!! 🙂

  • Christine Jenkins says:

    Great questions, great answers – loved reading it all.
    I am learning more and more that it is authenticity that is the thing that attracts me most to people, and that it how I want to be. It is the number one thing that attracted me to you, Jeannette in the first place – and the thing that I love most about you, what you write and the example you set at GVU that really promotes that.
    It is a big learning for me – to let go of the “good little girl” syndrome and not to try to make everyone feel better all the time. For me this has mainly shown up as worrying that I’ll hurt people, or they won’t like me if I say what I really think. But I also know that the times that I feel at my most powerful and my purest are when I say what I really think – sometimes this involves cursing, and sometimes loving words! But I am doing it more and more and it feels better and better.
    Paul, and COL, have really helped me to follow the “feeling better” place- in thoughts, words and actions – so sometimes it may feel better to think or write my bitchy, judgemental, hateful thoughts – and sometimes it may be better to say them to someone else, and sometimes to the person in question – it’s the feeling that will tell me. It’s getting easier – but it is still a work in progress. GVU and COL are my great supports and guides and companeros on this wonderful journey. As are all the delightful people and situations who offer me contrast along the way.
    I love Leigha’s comments on Healing!!! – very true – we don’t need fixing – we are fine just as we are. And others don’t either.
    Forgiveness just means letting go to me – and it happens when it feels better to let go than to hold onto whatever it is I’ve been holding onto. It doesn’t feel like a big deal anymore.
    Thanks for the stimulation of this post (not a masturbation comment either!!!)

  • OK — one more thought —
    I’ve always been TERRIFIED of being the party that is being gossiped about. So, my tentative efforts at not gossiping were preventative measures so that if I *caught* anyone gossiping about me then I could draw back dramatically, clutch the pearls, and say, “I NEVER gossip about other people.” So, gossip away if it feels better to do so!

  • Some more random thoughts:
    Here is the thing that I read many years ago and it turned the whole concept of forgiveness upside down (in a good way):
    “Forgiveness recognizes what you thought your brother did to you has not occurred. It does not pardon sins and make them real. It sees there was no sin.”
    This is from A Course In Miracles. The metaphysics behind this is so powerful.
    Leigha — I so love what you wrote about the word healing. To me this talks about the same thing. As Paul says: “Healing is not needed because you are already whole. You do not need to be fixed because you are not broken.” Powerful stuff!
    But back in the day… At the time I read the ACIM quote above I was trying to figure out how to forgive myself for having embezzled money. The people I stole from forgave me immediately. And I think that was because when I went to tell them about it, I had gotten willing to go to jail. In other words, I just gave up. And did so powerfully. I just wanted out from under the pain of it all. (Lots and lots of love to my mom for having taught me about this and for helping me figure out what to do when all that was going on)
    So, since I couldn’t make up a story about how they made me do it (which I’ve been known to do), I was left with the embarrassment of everyone knowing about it and the regret of having hurt an organization and the people who worked there. One of my friends asked me, “can you forgive yourself” and I was stumped. Stumped and angry because I couldn’t figure out how to answer the question (something I hate). It took a long time for me to get ok with things (I did pay the money back – it will all be in my memoirs). But, late at night when the anxiety and fear would hit real hard I would think about those lines from ACIM and the love that the people had given me instantly when I asked for it.
    BTW, many years later when I was going through the security clearance process, I had to tell the investigator about it so it’s now on my PERMANENT RECORD — just like my teachers in school always threatened would happen! 😉
    There’s another writing from ACIM that talks about forgiveness-to-destroy, which is the kind that we might do when we’re trying to overlook the perceived sin. “I forgive you because I’m a good person.”
    But the metaphysics of it all is pretty simple. We can’t ever really harm someone else (that got very clear to me with the embezzlement issue). We only ever harm ourselves. And, as Paul likes to say frequently, the worst part is that we’re delaying the relief that we could otherwise have RIGHT FUCKING NOW!
    So, that comes back to Give Up! I love that you included this in your list because this is the difference between getting fired up to get ‘er done and flowing with my own powerful desire. The best thing I ever do, time after time, is to give up now.
    After all, there’s nothing upstream that I actually want. As long as I’ve been aware of all of this, this part is still getting clearer and clearer all the time.
    A few weeks ago, I had a seminal (this is NOT a masturbation reference!) experience. I ended up one day having run out of money and being that I’m still on the road, this presented quite a bit of an issue. So, I ended up sleeping in my car one night. Will never do that again.
    But I bring it up in order to link that event with your post here. Even when it was happening, I knew that the particular spot where I was parked was going to be some massive holy ground because it was the location of a big change in my life. And I consider this post and all the massive awareness it has provoked to be just as important.
    You ask the best questions Jeannette. And I know this was not really a question, but your questions are one of the many things I adore about how you choose to manifest yourself.

  • Mollie Player says:

    Love these ideas. Thanks for the “unconvention.”

  • Wow…so much I want to say here. Where to start? Funny when I first read the post on FB and then I saw the comments were turned off I thought, interesting, Jeannette is putting out a pretty “controversial” blog and she doesn’t want comments? It made me laugh. I’m like, no, that is SO not Jeannette! Here is what I think but keep your comments to yourself! LOL
    I want to touch on each point so:
    #1 Forgiveness: I see this from a little different perspective. Possibly because I did a GVU call on this and explored it from a few different angles, but this is never something I thought much about and once I did had a big impact on my life. My not forgiving someone has nothing to do with being a victim or doing wrong to me but my making a sweeping statement about who they are as a person because of the way I made myself feel about what they did. I created a story around it when it really has nothing to do with me. It is a combination of forgiving whatever I felt they “did” to me and also forgiving my participation in it because as we know, the experience was co-created. For me, it’s really a matter of just letting it go, not excusing or anything else but knowing it has nothing to do with me. I also have come to realize the power in forgiving oneself in what we have created in the past to empower ourselves to create something different in the future. Take responsibility for it and move on. But, that’s just what I have found works for me.
    #2 Watching Your Language: This one made me laugh since I recently shared a with Frank on how I was “working” on being less judgmental and all it was doing was giving me more situations to be judgmental. Then I tried to justify it by saying I was not being judgmental, I’m just observant. Ha! Nice try. There is a big difference in saying to yourself “How can she wear that? I wouldn’t be caught dead in that” and saying “interesting how people have such difference taste”…Honestly, I don’t think we can’t be non-judgmental. It’s our culture, it’s what we are taught. Contrast and compare and when we do that we are saying this is better than that. Since we are many times looking to feel better, making people be “less than” can give us that feeling, even when we are trying not to.
    As for swearing, I find it very cathartic. I mean, we are pissed and are expressing that. Certain words just FEEL good to say. Of course, there is a time and a place where they are more appropriate than others and it’s good to know the difference but if I am being authentic, swearing is going to be part of my vocabulary and might even show up on my FB page.
    Gossip….oh, another good one. Well, I think it all comes down to the intention. Especially living in a small town like I do where everyone knows everyone’s business I just am aware of who I am speaking to and why I am sharing what I am. I think it’s natural for humans to talk about each other…it’s a form of bonding. And yes, I agree Jeannette there is relief in expressing vs withholding…So, who can we talk about? (just kidding)
    #3 Giving Up…if it feels better, then why the hell NOT give up?
    I’d say more but kitty now on lap so hard to type with one hand. 🙂

  • Nathalie, I wondered the same thing! When I first read it, I thought it was a cute “funny,” but then researched it to see if the Bible really said something like that.
    When I looked it up briefly, it seemed that it was a paraphrase or something. Here’s what I found:
    “And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.” (King James version)
    but this post does a good job of explaining it:
    (worth reading!)
    Thanks for posting, Nathalie! 🙂

  • Nathalie says:

    Too funny. 🙂 And I must say, I do love your Pinterest boards. Just found you on there the other day and repinned a bunch of your stuff. Pinterest is now one of my best go-to happy places when I need vibe boost.
    P.S. Is that really a bible verse? I’m curious enough that I’m actually going to go check that out… 😉

  • Oh, Leigha, that sounds like how Jesus manifested the “healings” he did! lol He didn’t see them as imperfect or broken or in need of fixing. He saw them whole and complete.
    And I think that’s what Abe says, too, that when you see something as “gone wrong” you’re already embracing a perspective that limits your power.
    I can’t imagine a more empowering person to be with than someone who wasn’t focused on finding something to “heal.” (We get that a lot in the coaching world. ha)
    What a breath of fresh air you are!

  • Leigha says:

    Well…I’m just going to say this because this is what came to mind when I read this.
    There is so much talk about healing and for some reason it rubs me the wrong way. I don’t want to think I need to heal something in order to achieve more or that I need to access my unconscious beliefs. There I said it!! LOL and I feel better. I don’t need healing. WOW…that feels really liberating to say! Whenever I hear about healing it makes me think that there was/is something wrong. THANKS for this post! ok I’m ready to lighten up about it…I don’t want the charge to be around the word healing…ok I’m letting that go 🙂

  • Debbi says:

    Janette you have raised such an important point here. I think forgiveness has been instilled into us to be focussed outwardly….’outsourced’.
    To just accept your humanness, in all its facets, implies the forgiveness is directed inwards instead. Thats where the empowerment and self love lies.
    The wisdom lies in accepting that the rest of life ‘is what it is’ and going about its own journey. I think its a good demonstration of the Serenity prayer… “grant me the serenity to accept the things i cannot change, courage to change the things i can, and the wisdom to know the difference”

  • Oh my gosh, that’s really the heart of it, isn’t it, Kathy?! Let ourselves be human! We’re not perfect! Let’s not suspend the enjoyment of our human experience because of that! lol
    I feel a LOT of relief in your words – thanks for chiming in!

  • Kathy says:

    It’s much easier to enjoy life if you let yourself be human!

  • I think you’re right, Jackie – forgiveness can be a hugely loaded word. At least, it seems to be for me. lol
    Thanks for posting!

  • Jackie says:

    I think that the word forgive is really loaded for some of us. Growing up in a Baptist church, I was taught that forgiving meant that we were supposed to get back to a place where what ever had been judged as needing to be forgiven had never happened. That is certainly unrealistic so for most of my life, I thought that there was something wrong with me because I couldn’t do it. I mean, sometimes someone does something that shows you a side of them that you never dreamed existed. How can you view them the same way you did before?
    I now understand that forgiving can mean accepting who someone is and loving them anyway, or it can mean accepting who they are and not wanting to be around them and being OK with that.
    Like others have said, I now feel that the need to forgive can be due to the fact that we have judged someone as being in need of forgiveness. I like accepting and taking appropriate action much better.

  • Yeah, I get that, Stephen. When someone asked me years ago if I’d forgiven a certain family member, I was like, WHAT FOR?! There wasn’t anything gone wrong there. There wasn’t anything TO forgive. That was just the two of us doing the best we each could. And while it wasn’t particularly pretty, I didn’t ever think of it as something that needed to be forgiven.
    The person who was asking me if I’d found forgiveness thought I was in denial, but I just couldn’t find that that forgiveness vibe was a good place to be. It’s like you said – in order to forgive, you have to have judged something or someone as wrong. Why don’t we just skip THAT part (when we can)?
    Loved this from your post: “When someone feels the need to apologize to me I usually say, “forget about it,” not because I’m feeling particularly gracious, but because I want to forget about it myself.” Amen to that!

  • Stephen says:

    I’m with Kimberly. Relief is always what I’m reaching for. And I have a well stocked buffet of things that can bring it to me when I feel I’m running low.
    I stopped forgiving a while ago. To forgive I have to express that someone victimized me in whatever way, and my forgiveness means I will not retaliate. Now I’m probably not going to retaliate, but it’s not because of the pain I might cause the offensive person. I don’t retaliate to offenses because of how it affects me. As long as I feel the need to forgive, I cannot forget. This means I have to hold on to the drama of an unpleasant experience long after the actors have left the stage. I’d rather just forget about it and move on. Should I encounter them again, I am then able to be the friendly, loving individual I enjoy being.
    When someone feels the need to apologize to me I usually say, “forget about it,” not because I’m feeling particularly gracious, but because I want to forget about it myself.
    It’s also my conviction that everyone I encounter is being the best human they know how to be. My opinion of their best is only instructive to me.

  • I totally agree, Barbara – nurturing resentment for inordinate lengths of time is not the way to go.
    I’ve personally found forgiveness isn’t usually my best ticket out of that energy. I get that it works for lots of folks, so more power to them! But for some of us, we might find a better way out using a different path.
    And, there is something to be said for the value of the temporary contrast while that angry energy is flowing. Totally with you, though, in that you don’t want to live there!
    Thanks for posting, my friend! 🙂

  • Kimberly, Keep the Tail Wagging says:

    Jackie – I love your story – we see the same type of contrast at our dog park and it makes me laugh. I’ve been thinking about this a lot based on recently experiences I’ve witnessed. I think people crave the contrast simply, because it’s what we’ve gotten used to.
    When I started letting things go, I found it easier to speak my mind. I don’t get offended if someone doesn’t get me or agrees. And I don’t worry about hurting people’s feelings. I just say what I say and it comes out just perfectly.
    When I wasn’t as secure, I prepared myself for contrast and I see friends and family doing the same thing.
    At our dog park a man was angry because the dogs were all off leash running around and trying to play with his dogs. It got a little out of control on his part, the rest of us just watched him like we discovered a talking Blue Heron.

  • Kimberly, Keep the Tail Wagging says:

    I stopped forgiving people, because it was a lie. I would say that I forgive them, but I now know what to expect from them. In my own way, I was holding a grudge. Now I just accept that everyone has their own path and don’t worry about it.
    Instead of giving up, I say that I have relief. Lately, that has become my new favorite feeling. It’s like a really good exhale, yawn, stretch, or massage. Just letting go of my expectations of others is like dropping a ton of luggage and walking away.
    I have friends and family who are still carry around their luggage and I leave them to it; we all find our way in our own time. Instead of trying to get people to change, I’ve started letting people walk their own path. This gives me loads of time I didn’t think I had to focus on ME! 🙂

  • BarbaraM says:

    I think forgiveness is important – maybe not in the first place when something happens – but if we nurture that resentment for years and years it does us no good. And this goes especially for situations where we made ourselves wrong. I have a bit different take on this – because I think the resentment causes cancer and it is better for us if we forgive as soon as possible if we want the best for us. It is a selfish little act 🙂
    I am talking from my own experience. As a child I was blaming my self that things went “wrong”…. when I forgave myself years later I felt tremendous relief. With todays knowledge probably I wouldn’t even resent anybody. Anyways I think forgiveness is important.

  • Now THIS feels like it’s got some juice, Kimberly: “Now I just accept that everyone has their own path and don’t worry about it.”
    When I’m at my best, I can do that, too. Thank you for showing us that example here!
    I also appreciate your habit of using “relief” instead of “giving up” as the latter has some strong negative connotation for some folks.
    Thanks for posting, and ps – huge congrats on your recent win for your blog!

  • Jackie says:

    It cracks me up that I read this after the following experience:
    I took Lani for a walk. We passed by the dog park and she didn’t want to go in with the other dogs. There was a big brown envelope attached to the gate to the dog park. Some one had written ‘Pleas read this’ on it. A couple of people had written things like ‘thanks for doing this’ on it so I was curious. I took out a slip of paper and read a rant about how much noise the dogs made and how the author just wanted peace and quiet and blah, blah, blah.
    We continued on our walk but I couldn’t stop thinking about that note and that the author was getting encouragement. When we got home, I took a sheet of paper and wrote on it ” This is a DOG PARK, one of the few places in Boulder where a dog can be a dog. It’s not the dogs’ fault that you moved across the creek from their park. Chill out.” When I took the paper an put it in the envelope with it boldly sticking out the top, there were some guys playing in the park with their dogs who wanted to read it. We all had a good laugh. They had been thinking of all kinds of snarky things to say in reply to the original note. I remarked that at I had refrained from saying ‘Chill the F*^K out.’
    In truth, I would have probably let it go if there hadn’t been the ‘positive’ feedback on the outside of the envelope. It did feel good to express myself on the subject.
    I don’t get why people put themselves in a place where there is certain to be contrast and then whine about it. I’m sure that the dog park has been there longer than that person has lived near it since it was indicated that he/she lives in the complex across the creek and it is newer than this one anyway and the park is on the property where we live and is supported by the HOA. It’s pretty much a gift to the area since it is positioned so that everyone gets to use it.

  • “delete any of it” – you crack me up, Frank!
    Would never dream of it. Your perspective is too interesting, helpful, and entertaining!
    As usual, you delivered. (Not just talking about the masturbation mention. lol) It DOES go right back to childhood when we were taught that it was our job to manage someone else’s (i.e. parent’s) emotional state.
    And I LOVE how you say you don’t pay much attention to the experts – including yourself. Now THAT’S living free!!
    You DO set a lovely example of not taking life or yourself too seriously, which is one of my favorite things about you. Although there are many.
    Thanks for posting, my friend! 🙂

  • My comments are going to be dis-jointed because I have a LOT to share on this topic. I may even comment more than once. And you can delete any or all of it. Happily! 🙂
    Anywho, thank you Jeannette for posting about this. I don’t know what exactly led you to this conclusion but I will tell you that after I had dinner with you in SLC last time, I noticed how much better I felt about our gab-fest once I got ok with the fact that I gossiped, particularly when I realized that my gossiping did feel better!
    Paul talks about all of this A LOT! And I don’t think I realized how much until I read your post.
    A year ago, I wanted to start using a phrase that came to me about describing how Paul talks about our physical experience: “A radical approach to living a delicious life.” But someone didn’t like the word radical and so I folded on myself about it. But now, this phrase is coming out of the closet and out onto the stage!
    One of the things Paul reminds us about again and again is how so much of this comes from a basic thing that almost all (very well-meaning) parents do when talking to their children. They say: “I will feel better if you will act differently.” I think this is the source of all of what you wrote.
    As Abraham says, a war on anything accomplishes nothing. So the current war on obesity is having exactly the results that we can expect: more obesity. It’s hilarious to me every time that someone discovers that diet foods actually have the opposite effect, particularly margarine.
    I don’t pay much attention to the experts, including myself. I am a damn good channel and will always be getting better at it as contrast arises. And that’s it, isn’t it? Blessed, o blessed, contrast! That’s where all the good stuff is. Paul talks about this constantly and I’m just now really getting it.
    Or better put: I’m now seeing more areas of my life where I have kept quiet because I wanted to be a good little boy. But I can’t stay quiet for long, so I burst out into too-much-ness or too-loud-ness (or too-fat-ness) and someone gets upset and then I get upset because I’m a good little boy and don’t like for people not to like me.
    So, there’s some tidy contrast. And, fabulously, it’s when I’m most outrageous is when the people I like are attracted to me. It’s when I’m quiet that the people I’ve learned to tolerate (so icky!) then start to tell me how much they like my gentleness and how quiet I am and all that.
    Well, this is one hell of a kettle of fish you got going on here Jeannette and I thank you very, very much.
    Also underrated for relief: masturbation!
    Love you, love your passion, mean it — Mwah! Frank

  • >