One of the most hotly debated queries of all time is, “Can a person change?”
It is one of the questions that cause people to compartmentalize, drill down on and sub-categorize to the point of exhaustion. Some distinctions are valid; are we speaking physically?
My answer: Yes of course.
Are we speaking emotionally or spiritually?
Yes again.
Many will disagree on that one, they will inevitably toss out “Nature” and maybe even offer up the Scorpion and the Frog as a backup. Do you know the Scorpion and the Frog?
A Scorpion approaches a Frog on the Riverbank and asks to ride across the river on the back of the Frog. The Frog objects, stating that the Scorpion will sting him and they will both drown.
The Scorpion replies, “That is illogical. If I sting you we will both drown.”
Assured, the Frog complies. Halfway across, the Scorpion stings the Frog. As they both are sinking to their deaths, the Frog asks, “Why did you do that? Now are both going to drown.”
The Scorpion replied, “I’m a Scorpion. It’s my Nature.”

I unequivocally believe that severe mental illness aside, we are all capable of changing how we are. I know this because I did it. I am nothing special, nor have I ever made claim to be. I’m not wealthy, particularly intelligent or clever, nor am I a great problem solver. I do not possess a great secret. I am simply self-aware and free enough (not completely but I’m working on it) of Ego and silly pride to take an unflinching look at myself and realize who I was. It was hard because I perceived myself as an entirely different person than I actually was. That was a tough pill to swallow. But I did it. And I worked on it.
Therein lies my not-so-secret secret.
Hard work and accountability.
Taking the realizations for what they are (have you noticed that few people like the truth anymore because it hurts their feelings?), facing them, swallowing your pride, and actually fucking doing something about it is hard work. It’s unpleasant. Sometimes it hurts.
The work is akin to the 9th step of AA, making amends. You find yourself apologizing to yourself at multiple stages of your existence, asking forgiveness and offering actual amends, as opposed to meaningless apologies.
What do they say? Words are meaningless, Action is what matters. Even in baby steps, forward progress is what matters.

If you can take epiphanies and the subsequent insights and awareness and channel them into doing better then you have made a change. It’s a copout to blame your nature for not reaching your potential. Your nature is what you will be if you don’t want to do the work. Your ultimate self, which I define as the “you” that you can live with, is achievable. We come from the earth. The earth is heavy with clay. Clay can be molded by the hands of man into whatever form we choose.

I’m sure that I will get some blowback on this. I welcome the discourse. Again, I did it. I couldn’t look at myself in the mirror for most of my life. I made the decision to take an unflinching look at my life and saw the need for change. The alternative would have been to just accept my behavior and choose to live with it, expecting everyone that I ever interact with between now and the day that I die to just deal with it. Now, I don’t love the guy I see now but I can work with him. All because I decided to go to work. I am hopeful that I will die a man of purpose and substance, not just a guy that people managed to put up with.
I am a work in progress. Slow progress, but progress just the same.

6 thoughts on “Change”

  1. Changes are good, glad it’s your own choice to make a change.
    Life is changing constantly so, why is it so difficult on us to accept a change or BE the change?

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Very well put. I figure we are all works in various states of progress in one direction or another. Sort of like riding a large, loaded adventure motorcycle in deep sand.
    The task takes some learning, practice, balance and control. On a small bike with no load, deep sand is easier and even a fairly unskilled rider can make it look easy. The big loaded bike accentuates any and all deficiencies.
    I am the overloaded kitchen sink and all adventure bike wallowing through deep sand. When I keep my head I’m pretty OK. When I get cocky and ignore the world of sand? Well, life gets bogged down a good deal and I am most likely to stumble. With help I can right the big old bike and get back under way.
    Slowly but surely working my way somewhere.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’m glad you found it relatable. And thanks for the motorcycle analogy. You’re an adventure bike rider. Love those, can’t wait to try one. I’m a Harley guy. My bike is like me…big, heavy and not very nimble


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