No this is not a post telling you to vote. I start that way because a lot of similar sounding blurbs usually are precursors to telling Americans to exercise their constitutional right to use their voice in the ballot box. However, the concept I will speak of, the concept of not relinquishing your power is not only meant for Americans. It is meant for anyone out there who is so caught up in what is thrust upon them in news and social media that they are in danger of losing sight of that which they actually can control.
As someone who generally does not allow what I read online or see in the news to have too much of an impact on my mood and overall outlook, I have not been someone who has sworn off social media and the multitudes of “news” sources. That being said, I sometimes think that all I am doing is wasting time I could be spending on more productive activities. Maybe so, but what it really comes down to is what does it take to make my life better? Who do I hold responsible? I know a lot of people who come across as though their future totally rests in the hands of the upcoming election. While I have my own very strong personal opinions and believe the outcome of the election will have serious consequences in the future, I go into November 3rd being somewhat indignant. I refuse to allow my entire future and happiness be dictated by who wins and who loses on election day. I intend to control my own outlook and state of mind. And I urge you all to do the same.
I recently posted the following on Twitter.
No matter what side you support in the US, tens to hundreds of millions of people are on the wrong side of history. That’s scary regardless of who is right.
While I do believe that, I also believe the United States of America is plagued by 2 very significant problems. First of all, many people struggle to think for themselves. Group think is a real thing. People find their influences and often duplicate the thoughts and words they pick up from those influences. Some might accuse me of the same, but the mere fact that I am willing to see fault in both sides helps me to believe that even if they’re correct about me, it could be a lot worse. In order to prove my point and piss off most people who are reading this in one sentence I will make the following statement. Calling Donald Trump a Nazi and Joe Biden a socialist are examples of group think, and both incorrect statements. You may insist you came up with either belief on your own, and it is not for me to say that you didn’t, but many believe and say one of those things as a result of being part of group think.
The other problem plaguing us, and I believe this is a problem that transcends politics and is very possibly one of the most harmful aspects of our current society, is the tendency to always look for someone to blame for what is wrong in our lives. Of course sometimes someone is at fault for hurting you or your loved ones. It would be naïve to say otherwise. But the mindset of always looking for someone to blame, besides generally being futile, also causes us to move away from the most important thing we can do for ourselves. And that is to become better people. There are 2 kinds of people in our world that blame others for where they are in life. The first are the kind who were hurt by a person, people or institution in a way that impacted their life significantly. Not only do we tend not to judge those people, we find ourselves having tremendous respect for their ability to overcome the disadvantage their history afforded them. The other kind of person is someone who uses blame as a crutch, always finding culpability in everyone other than themselves. With politics as heated as it is, and as much at stake in the upcoming election as there is, people are all set to use the outcome of the election as the reason for why it all goes wrong moving forward.
While I recognize the importance of our leaders’ decisions, I urge each and every one one of you to make the following pledge to yourselves. Pledge to yourself, should you have the medical and psychological capability to do so, that you will be the one that controls your mindset. That you will recognize what it is in your life that makes it special and meaningful. Rather than using your energy on blaming others for what can and does go wrong, focus on working hard on making yourself better and stronger. Be kinder, more considerate and more loving, and watch in joy as it ultimately comes back to you from somewhere, be it expected or not. Don’t allow a very self-serving media, on both sides of the aisle, to terrify you into action or lack of action. And make the most of today, because no matter who wins on election day, no one is promised tomorrow.
Finally, while I believe in God and it personally provides me with some degree of balance and strength, I know some high quality people who don’t necessarily share that same belief. I say this because while my belief in God may either contribute or be at the core of what centers me, there are others that need to find something else to center them. I urge them to do so. Hopefully that center will allow you to realize that if you are fortunate enough to get another day to live and hopefully improve your life, you have something to be grateful for and something that can, and should be motivating moving forward. And of course please know, that no matter who you vote for, if I love you today, I will love you equally the day after the election, even if one of us doesn’t get the outcome we wanted.
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