Sometimes I find myself living between two extremes. How do you explain that you are extremely outgoing and talkative yet, sometimes completely taciturn ?(Fleeing from people and purposefully becoming a loner?) There are days when I simply seek solitude when I simply do want to be anyone’s friend. I don’t want to talk, chat, or visit.
I could crawl in bed with a good book, journal, or watch one of Issa Rae’s web series and ignore every call or text. Since I am self-aware, I have been asking myself what the trigger is. I want to discover how I easily move from side of the spectrum to the other.
I think I stumbled upon the root of the problem. I learned that sometimes I spend way too much time investing in others. I will be anyone’s cheerleader who needs grace and support. I enjoy helping others and seeing them succeed. I will rarely say “no” because I am always conscious of how many people have told me “yes” when I really needed their help. I genuinely try to bless those around me.
Ironically, in my Strategy course we learned that people will act in their own self-interest. I wanted to raise my hand in rebuttal…what about Mother Theresa, what about Martin Luther King, what about underpaid teachers working in impoverished schools, what about me when I have put my agenda on the back burner to help someone prepare for an interview for their dream company? Isn’t it a bit cynical to believe everyone is just selfish?
Well I now know that these examples, along with many others, are the exception and not the rule.
Even some people around me who seem humble, kind, and spiritually grounded have taken off their coat of kindness for selfish ambition motivated by the “since I am trying to win, I can’t help you win too” attitude. I don’t see it so black and white nor do I believe that helping someone else succeed will prevent my own success. In ethnic terms, I STAY Winning! And it’s probably because of spiritual law…give and it shall come back to you.
In solitude, I could hear God speak clearly. And while I will never change my core values and subscribe to the economic theory that all men act in their own self-interest, I will try to find the balance between giving and taking. I will monitor my investments more closely and divest from relationships that have a negative ROI.