Monday, September 9, 2013

Free Speech, Attraction, and Competition

Thoughts on a Monday morning.

On Free Speech
I like that we have the right to speak, but not the right to be heard. The latter is not a right, it's a privilege that must be earned.

On Self-respect
No one but YOU can give YOU SELF-respect.

On Attraction
No one is attracted you if find yourself unattractive, at least, no one you'd want to find you attractive.

BTW, Being attractive has relatively little to do with being handsome, pretty, or having a "nice" personality.

Attraction and Relationship
Attraction is no basis for relationship. Many start relationships based on attraction. They figure that they'll work out the miscellaneous stuff (i.e., compatibility) later. Oftentimes each party thinks the other will change in order to be more compatible.

When (if) they work on compatibility, it's the big stuff, the religious stuff like god, diet, kids, and money. They rarely if ever work on the little stuff, the daily incompatibilities that "shouldn't" matter all that much.

However, it's the little foxes that ruin the vines, that eat the roots rather than the fruits.
  1. If you're someone who likes to snuggle at night, it matters that you're attracted to someone who needs his space. 
  2. If you're someone who pops out of bed and is out the door, it matters that you're attracted to someone who takes hours to get ready in the morning. 
  3. If you're someone who makes big decisions quickly, it matters that you're attracted to someone who can never decide what to order for dinner.
  4. If you're someone who's all about change and new experiences, it matters that you're attracted to someone who's all about predictability and stability.
  5. If you're someone who loves to cook for others, it matters that you're attracted to someone who's a finicky eater.
Attraction is not about pretty or being nice; it's about things like confidence, awareness and thoughtfulness. Really, these "intangible" attributes are palpable when truly present.

Attraction matters, but sustainable relationship is not about attraction. As mundane as it may sound, sustainable relationship is about compatibility. Really.

On Competition and Competing
If you struggle with the concept of competition or people who are "competitive", it's not because competition or being competitive is bad. It's because you're clinging too tightly to concepts like winning and losing: so tightly that you've intimately associated them with competition and competing.

Competition is a process, not an outcome. It's about learning, about winning or losing. Competition lets you to practice and develop skills. It lets you learn from other learners. It's one of the most powerful learning tools available.

When we avoid competition rather than addressing our competitive dysfunction, we miss out. When we don't foster and help develop competition in educational environments, we deny students access some of the greatest learning experiences available and we pass on competitive dysfunction.

Happy Monday,

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