NEW CASTLE —
What have you lost interest in recently?
It seems as if I lose interest in more and more things as I get older. It might seem a frightening thought at first, but really, how many trivial pursuits do we cling to that we eventually just outgrow?
There was a time when I was concerned with having a nice tan, but age and wisdom brought me to my senses. I lived for the occasional kegger in my college days, but outgrew that in a blessedly short amount of time. Sometimes things that seem uber-important at one moment of your life just aren't right for the life you're living now, and that's a good thing.
The thing I've lost the most interest in recently was, for most of my life, the driving force behind everything I did: the need for acceptance. From my earliest days on the playground right up to the days surrounding my 40th birthday, I wanted ... no, NEEDED, everyone to like me.
One hint of disapproval from the remotest of acquaintances and I was a crumbling, groveling ball of nerves. I would embark on strained conversations with lengthy explanations and pleas for the offended individual to understand that I was innocent of the assumed wrong-doing.
But a few weeks ago, as some of my girlfriends and I sat around a bonfire, one of them asked if I was still friends with a mutual acquaintance with whom I'd had a notoriously rocky relationship. "Not really," I responded. "I'm too old to waste energy on people I don't really want around me anymore."
I felt as if I'd had one of those "Ah-ha" moments Oprah is always talking about when I realized, as I licked melted s'mores from my fingertips, that I was speaking the absolute truth. And I actually surprised myself with a truth I hadn't previously realized.
How freeing such knowledge can be! I'd always known what a burden it was to constantly need everyone's approval, but I'd never known how to overcome it. Who knew that eventually, someday, I would just simply outgrow it, as surely as a houseplant that needs moved to the outdoors?
Yes, I've lost interest in persuading others to like to me, or even to just accept me as I am. That's a burden that I've handed over to those who care about me. Those people will treasure our friendship and work with me to maintain it. Those people don't need any kind of persuading to hang around.
The other people? Well, I still wish them the best. But they're going to have to find it in their own garden.
NEW CASTLE —
What have you lost interest in recently?
- Lisa Madras
Lisa Madras: Want to feel more welcome? Just say ‘thank you’
When was the last time you said, "thank you" to yourself? I've been a busy, busy girl lately. And by lately, I mean about the past several years or so.
Lisa Madras: My life isn’t simple — but today, it’s an open book
What is your cosmic elevator pitch? I found this question today and wanted to throw it out there for a couple of reasons. Let me start by clarifying that I'm not asking what you do for a living, or how many kids you have, or even what you might write about yourself for an online dating profile.
Lisa Madras: Playing it ‘safe’ may be the biggest risk of all
When was the last time you took a risk? I have never been a huge risk-taker. Sure, I love roller coasters and surfing and occasionally (although I'll deny it if you ever ask me) driving just a little bit too fast. But the difference between me and the real risk-takers of the world is that my so-called risks are carefully controlled and calculated.
Lisa Madras: Me? An athlete? That might be a stretch
Is it out of reach? Or have you just not stretched yourself far enough? My friend Alexis and I have a tradition. Each year in March we attend the Crisis Shelter Auction, a fundraiser for the shelter that involves dinner, drinks, and of course, an auction
Lisa Madras: Thanks for the wisdom, Dr. Phil — I think
How important are you ... to you? "Don't worry about hurting my feelings because I guarantee you not one bit of my self-esteem is tied up in your acceptance."
Lisa Madras: My life, as see on TV? Geez, I hope not!
What makes life easier? If you've ever seen an "As Seen on TV!" product, you might believe that there are a lot of things out there that will make your life easier.
Lisa Madras: Don’t be a tattle-tale? That’s a dangerous double-standard
Is it ever OK to be a tattle-tale? Tattle-tale ... isn't that an ugly word? The dictionary defines it as "a child who tells a grown-up about something bad that someone else has done."
Lisa Madras: Feeling stuck? It’s time to figure out why
Why are you where you are? Geez, if this isn't a loaded question, I don't know what is. This one is going to make up dig deep. Real deep. And before the digging even starts, we have to define what we mean by "where you are."
Lisa Madras: We’re living, breathing question marks searching for answers
Why are we still asking ourselves questions?It's been a long time now that I've been writing this blog.There are times when I wonder when it will run its course — when my readers will lose interest in questions, when I will simply run out of questions to ask.
Lisa Madras: No, I didn’t die and, yes, I still have no life
Hello? Is there anybody out there? (Has my life really become just one preposition off a Pink Floyd song?)
- More Lisa Madras Headlines
- Lisa Madras: Want to feel more welcome? Just say ‘thank you’