Dichotomies are the contrast between two things. Just this week, we had the dichotomy between the solemn testimony by Dr. Ford, and the untapped anger of a man, Judge Kavanaugh. People are homeless or dead after the earthquake and tsunami in Indonesia, while you and I go about our daily routines.
Extremes are visible without effort. Sit for thirty minutes, and people watch, you will see what I mean.
Balance is one secret to a healthy and well life; one slice of chocolate cake vs. the whole pie; one beer vs. many beers; skinny vs. obese; family vs. working 24/7; active vs. lounge lizard; co-dependent vs. self-care. The list could go on.
Today, I am people watching; old/young; tall/tiny; alone/in groups; flip- flops/stilettos; bald/long curls; ragged jeans/velvet jackets; fast pace walking/wheelchairs. You get the picture; life is full of dichotomies.
Days would be dull if everyone and everything were the same. We would feel like clones or robots.
Why not embrace differences? We can get fired up over what someone says or believes, yet we all want the same things including to be heard, to have our opinions valued, and to be allowed individuality.
We are different by nature and nurture: I don’t eat meat. You might want beef three times a day; I was born in Colorado, USA. You might have been born in Ireland or Brazil; I like hats, and you might think they look odd; I earned an advanced degree, and you might have gained two advanced degrees and a seven-figure salary; I have green eyes, and your’s are brown.
Who cares? What does it matter in the whole scheme of things?
It matters if you can see through the eyes of another person? Can you listen, contribute, compromise? Can you give someone credibility?
If the answer is yes, you are on the road to mental wellness. If the answer is no, you are prone to stress, blaming, shaming, and other menageries of negative, health draining behaviors and emotions.
You have no control over what goes on around you, but you do have control over what goes on inside of you. You have 100% control of your thoughts. Shift those thoughts, and you can appreciate and criticize with balance.
As you undoubtedly know, one person’s love or logic will not likely change another’s point of view. So, give it up. Instead, contribute to a bridge between the dichotomies of life, and sleep a little sounder.
Until the next time: Live while you live.
Jennifer Goble, Ph.D., LPC, is the author of “My Clients…My Teachers,” and the blogger and writer of Rural Women Stories: www.ruralwomenstories.com.
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