The key to consistency....

Is knowing yourself and knowing what you can and can't control....
I just realized this tonight.
I get alot of comments on how consistent I am....
I don't have a whole lot of ups and downs. 
I used to...
I think I used to surprise myself alot.
My moods would be variable (I am being charitable.)
Things would upset me.
My upset primarily being sharper over things I felt I couldn't control.
Like a change in plans, or someone else's life choices...
Or my own inexplicable behavior.

My consistency is a direct result of 'getting to know myself'.
Getting to know who I am.
What I want.
What I'll put up with and what I won't.
And what things I don't even bother with.
I figured a few things out over the last couple of years that have helped me immensely.
Things like:
Knowing what I believe.
Knowing I don't care what other people think of what I believe.

Knowing what kind of people I want in my circle of friends.
which people to avoid like the plague.

I no longer feel compelled to associate with everyone who wants to associate.
If I get that funny feeling about 10 minutes in..
You know that feeling...
The little voice you ignored, the one that will come back to haunt you six months Later, after hanging out all this time...you find yourself saying:
 "Boy, I wish I'd listened to that feeling in my gut that said "Get Away Now" but I didn't.
Well, I used to feel too guilty to listen to that voice.
I don't anymore.
It saves A LOT of time.
I just don't hang out, and I don't call back.
I TRUST myself.

I conserve emotional energy for the givers in my life.
I avoid emotional succubi the way a cat avoids water...
You can tell these kind of people because within five minutes they are blaming somebody or something for their crappy day.
They will continue to do this, and someday you will be included in their list.
There is always drama, always a crisis.
They never seem to realize that the only common denominator in all these situations is THEM.


Knowing which things not to bother with...
I am not a joiner.
I am not a community activist.
I find large groups of people emotionally draining.
I used to think this was something I needed to 'get over'.
I don't like math.
I have no intellectual curiosity about certian things.
People interest me.
I love people.
I like learning about people.
I finally realized that
It is a critical and important part of my makeup.
Some people do great with large groups of people.
I am an ace with one on one.
I want to listen to people.
I don't want to shmooze, chit chat, or blather.
If a person is someone I want to talk to...
Then I want to talk...not mumble incoherent crap about the weather.
Now, with my neighbors I do chit chat.
I don't really always want a close personal relationship with everyone.
(You will know those type of people when you meet them.
The relationship just happens...it doesn't take effort.
That's the way to make real best friends.)
Learning the art of meaningless conversation is a lifesaver...
You don't want to be the strange one..lol.
So, accept your weaknesses and your strengths and build on them..
It actually reminds me of this little  homeschool story...

 An old story tells of the creation of a school for the animals. In this school, everybody took the same four courses: flying, swimming, climbing, and running. Among the students were a duck, a flying squirrel, a fox, and an elephant. These four were highly motivated, and wanted to get good grades, so they all tried very hard.
The duck did fantastically well in swimming and flying, but he lagged behind his classmates in climbing and running, so focused special attention on those two subjects. However, his feet became so sore from trying to run and his wings were so bedraggled from trying to climb that by the end of the year he not only failed both those subjects, but made C’s in swimming and flying, which had once been his two best subjects.
At the beginning of the school year, the squirrel was first in his class in climbing and running and was second only to the duck at flying. But as the months wore on, he missed so much school from catching pneumonia in his swimming class that he failed everything.

To make matters even worse, because the squirrel constantly squirmed and chattered in class, and had difficulty paying attention, he was diagnosed with a learning disorder. The squirrel eventually was placed in remedial classes and had to be medicated in order to continue with his school work.

The fox was a natural in his running class and scored well in climbing and swimming, but became so frustrated at his inability to get good Grades in flying that he began assaulting his classmates. He even tried to eat the duck. His behavior was so disruptive he was expelled from school. He fell in with a
rough crowd and eventually wound up in a center for animal delinquents.

The elephant, meanwhile, developed low self-esteem because he couldn’t do well in any of the subjects. When he sank into clinical depression, his therapist persuaded him to try a different school that focused on subjects such as lifting and carrying. The elephant was disappointed, because careers in lifting and carrying were not as prestigious as careers in flying, swimming, climbing, or running. Even though he always felt inferior, he managed to make a decent living and support his family.

What's my point.
You didn't see Michael Jordan picking up needlepoint to become a more 'well rounded person'.
Be good at something, whatever that is...and then,
FeeL good about it.
Don't worry about what you aren't good at...that's what the other people are for.
Be excellent.
Use YOUR talent.

Fill your life with worthwhile and emotionally stable people.
If you aren't emotionally stable...work at it till you are.
It's worth the effort to get to know and love yourself.
Have a great night guys..
I am off to bed.


outdoor.mom said...

great post! i love the lesson in animals :-) when you have that key to consistency i wish you'd pass it on to me ;-)

Amber said...

Great post.
I need to remember this. I try to hard to do everything perfect but I do need to figure out what I'm good at and focus on that.

Thanks for the reminder.

100togo said...

wow, beautiful post!!!!!

Linda Pressman said...

I do remember Michael Jordan taking up golf and he was horrible at it, which is also reassuring. We all have our God-given talents. We just don't have EVERY talent.

Nice post, Chris.

Fiona said...

Awesome post - I really enjoyed the animal school story!

snoconegirl said...

Wow what a cool lesson..I loved it..and very nice layout..great post chris..kelli

anne h said...

Chris - I love this song.
(Jar of Hearts by Christina Perri)
What a treasure.
Just like you and your blog.
Growing strong!

Anonymous said...

First off, I love the animal story. What a great way to make a point!

Second, you are wise to know you. Saves so much time and trouble.

Marie said...

Very well said. You know how to say what you really mean and mean what you really say! Love it!

Ali said...

Love this post, Chris. You're a fellow introvert. :-) We seem very similar in our personalities and how we spend time with others.

Enjoying your blog. I'm way behind though!


Joy said...

Hi Chris, Awesome post!! You are very wise!!!! I am learning to appreciate my talents and I am grateful that I know my limitations. I don't try to be someone I'm not. Takes the pressure off!! Hugs!

Hanlie said...

I was nodding throughout this post... As someone who only recently (like in the last two weeks) saw the light, I can fully identify. Previously I was still holding on to outdated ideas about who I was and what I wanted, but suddenly the real Hanlie has come into focus and I am so motivated! I love that feeling!

Rettakat said...

"I conserve emotional energy for the givers in my life.
I avoid emotional succubi the way a cat avoids water..."

That's a great way to put it!
And I liked how you made the point about using "our" own talents, not thinking we had to do it all..."that's what the other people are for."

There's something freeing in that...

Lori Ann said...

Great post!

I feel like it is speaking directly to me.


HopeFool said...

Loved this post,

bbubblyb said...

Great post Chris!!!