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The Lamentable Loss of Self-Actualization

I wish I could be happier. Strike that. What I mean to say is that I wish I could be happier more easily. There are a great many things in life that I have to be grateful for. And, often, I am. But the tendency is to focus on the negative first. It often takes a conscious effort to be fully appreciative of things. This is something I'm working on. Indeed, it is one of many things in life that I strive to better about myself. Sometimes it's successful, sometimes... well... it's a work-in-progress.

Why do I mention all of this, I ask rhetorically? Good question. It's because I spend a lot of time (too much time) on social networking sites (specifically, Facebook and Twitter), and have noticed an uneasy trend developing amongst certain folks. It is along the lines of, 'Here I am world, take me as I am!' (although it isn't always put so expletive-free). Here is an example of what I'm referring to:

Charming, no?  A few things come to mind whenever I read something like that:

1) The person probably cares a lot more about what others think of them than they are willing to admit.

2) If they don't, then they're an anti-social asshole.

3) It's impossible to please everyone, but sometimes there is legitimacy to the issues folks may have with us. If a (serious) response is to scoff at them, then we've chosen obdurateness over the human flexibility to perhaps change oneself for the better.

I see this a lot on Facebook, et al. People with issues (i.e, most of us) admit that we have issues, but then post some sort of snide, defensive remarks to the effect of how it's ok that we are who we are, and if someone doesn't like it, then they can just move on. Folks, this sucks. Sorry, but it does. I mean, it's one thing to acknowledge the good things about yourself. But we should also listen to the criticisms from others, right?

Look, no one is perfect. Not you, certainly not I. And, sometimes, our imperfections are what make us unique, quirky and lovable. But not always. So let's end this trend of pretending like we don't care what others think about us. Let's realize that, as long as there is breath in our bodies, we should strive to be better. Otherwise, what's the point?


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