What can you accomplish in life so that no one messes with you?

Ok, the glib answer: nothing

You might accomplish enough wealth to protect yourself from all attacks and ridicule; but the only way to avoid being messed with then would be total isolation. And that would be messing with yourself more than anyone else ever could, because it’s impossible to live a worthwhile life completely disconnected. Continue reading

To what extent do you agree with this statement: “You can never know a person or their secrets”?

You can know a person enough.

You don’t have to trust anyone. In fact, trust isn’t really a choice—it must be earned to exist; and this happens by degrees.

You meet someone, you start to get to know them, you see where you connect, you share along those lines, trust grows, and your lines of connection naturally expand. Continue reading

If nobody understands you, are you insane?

Probably not.

You might sense an insurmountable gap between your inner world (with all its potential) and what others can currently understand or appreciate of it.

But the second half of knowing, thinking, and being (as a person) is learning to communicate; otherwise any treasures you find within yourself stay locked up and unknown. Continue reading

Is it wrong to tell your 5-year-old how perfect you think they are all the time?

It’s funny how we communicate with kids sometimes. But they get quite good at detecting whatever’s really behind our words.

Toddlers might enjoy the funny sounds we make as we coo and goo back at them in hyperbolic, positive reflection. But throughout childhood, kids are prone to recognize genuine affirmation for true talent displayed. Continue reading

Is it possible to develop feelings for someone merely through texting before meeting in person?

fish squareYes.

I used to have this pen pal who lived far away. We’d send each other encouraging emails from time to time, and just enjoyed exchanging thoughts on life.

Then we agreed to talk by phone one Christmas night.

It was like suddenly the possibility of being “more than pen pals” donned on both of us at once; and what was communicated very indirectly (but in both directions) was: “Hey, are you feeling this too?” Continue reading

Am I selfish for not communicating with others?

Everyone now has instant access to anyone all the time.

But attention is the new currency. Laser-focused, we’re highly intentional about what we’ll give our attention to.

My best friend could send me an article or video she absolutely loves; but I probably wouldn’t get to it unless it was something I too found interesting or valuable. Continue reading

What happens when you close yourself off from other people?

You get used to running all your own systems well.

You learn to fully take care of yourself, living completely on your own time.

A period of isolation can lead to valuable self-discovery; unaffected, you get a clear sense of exactly what you want to do, be, have…

Yet isolate yourself too long, and your mind and patterns start to set and petrify like concrete. Then, closed off and incontestable, you find yourself left with nothing to go on but what you’ve thought and learned before. Continue reading

What kind of people should I be worried about?

Let’s look a little beyond the obvious (anyone who’s abusive or unsafe).

Worry about those who talk a lot but never listen . . . those who won’t ask about your deepest hopes and dreams. They might make ok bosses or family members (from a distance); but you could waste a lot of time trying to force the wrong people to care.

Worry about those who act like they’ve got you pegged before they get to know you. Their relationship won’t really be with you, anyway, but with some image they’ve preemptively fostered in their mind. You won’t be able to really show or tell them much of anything. Continue reading