Sunday, 21 November 2010

The snowball effect

Ask me “what’s up?” “How’s it going?” “How was your day?” I’ll always answer fully now. Questions should be answered in a meaningful way. I take questions and answers very seriously. That doesn’t exclude sense of humor, by the way.

For too long I said, “nothing much.” Those questions are doorways to a million conversational paths, to connecting with another person, with finding out about their day and what they think, enriching both people in the conversation. If you don’t have something going on in your life, that’s a whole other problem, and you’re not living, so go fix both problems.

But I am living, and there’s a lot going on and always will be. Even if I’m just watching TV, I can always say what I’m watching, ask what the other person thinks, treat them with respect and attention. If I’m writing, I’ll talk about what’s the context, how I feel about it, ask for feedback, ask them what’s going on in their lives. Because I care. Now and forever I will. Not doing so was a cop-out, laziness and not using my brain.

Same goes for “whatever” and “I don’t care.” Those aren’t valid answers. Even if you really don’t care about some issue, there has to be a reason why. There’s a million things to say and do. Share yourself with people. Cat Stevens, you’re a sage.

Negativity snowballs. That’s why I wouldn’t answer. I said no, I didn’t want a part of this question, because I didn’t want a part of any question that followed. That’s fear and horseshit. The snowball effect doesn’t just apply to simple ice breakers. It’s a sarcastic remark that turns into another which turns into a crack, which turns into a feeling of insecurity, which turns into all these negative things you wished you could take back. There’s always something better to say than that one belittling joke. It’s just lazy and heartless to fall back on those quick, easy quips.

Sarcasm is usually an instance where substance could have been inserted, but laziness or pettiness took over.

Negativity has no place in my life. The real good stuff, the stuff that makes people smile and live up to their potentials, that’s the positive. Making others feel good, myself feel good from that, of the people involved in the conversation, dropping their guard and speaking to each other truly from within.

Positivity snowballs too, but that’s the good snowball, the kind you build snowmen and igloos with. Sign me up for the good stuff.

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