Sunday, July 12, 2015

Tips for Living Wicca; Stop Arguing, You Might Learn Something

Okay, so have you ever observed this type of behavior (or perhaps you've been in the teacher, or the student's place):

A student has been seeking and is just frustrated and is trying to find a way to make changes, improve, learn, move on, etc. 

The student starts seeking, reads a bit, explores and finds a teacher. Now not all teachers are the greatest thing since sliced bread, but the student finds a teacher (either online, or in classroom, or as a personal mentor, etc.) and this teacher really seems to know something-- is in the place where the student longs to be, maybe. 

But right away, instead of really listening and really trying to make a change, this student starts to  challenge question everything the teacher is saying.

The teacher has heard such questions before. Questions are good. "Okay, I can explain that," the teacher says, then offers advice on how to correct or solve the problem. 

Student jumps back in with endless responses and more and more challenges:
- But that doesn't work for me...
- But I can't...
- But what about when...
- And what if...
- But...
- But...
- But...

Teacher at first tries to answer, gets to the point where all they can do is shrug and shake their head and throw their hands into the air. Tries to move on to prevent this kind of negativity and these challenges from dominating the discussion and getting in other people's way.

Student assumes their special case even stumped the teacher. 

Okay, so what happened here? Is the student's problems really bigger than anyone and every else? Is the student really just screwed, a victim of circumstance?

In the vast majority of cases, no, not at all... the student just demonstrated that, despite the fact that they're having problems and want to improve/learn something new/move on... he is unwilling; he's unwilling to change, to try, to listen to people with knowledge and experience (people who probably HAVE overcome the same problems). 

The student doesn't like his situation; he WANTS change, but he wants it to come from the outside. He wants something to cure the problems and make him feel better. He's looking for the proverbial magic pill... he wants to get his crap together; but at the same time he is resistant to the only things that will actually accomplish that: the effort, the embrace of change, the internal work.

Now I have been that student, so I am very familiar with the type. Into my 20s, I was horribly that student., and I understand that perspective. I understand that that student doesn't get that he's his own biggest problem, and his attitude is his own biggest roadblock.

When I stopped being that student, and just shut up and listen, and started doing what people with more knowledge and experience said-- Lowe and behold, things started to change. 

And now, what comes around goes around- I am that teacher. Any student who is willing to try, I know I can work with them, and they will succeed. 

But it's difficult to work with that student. Any student who gives me excuses, who questions what I tell them to do without trying because they think it will waste their time, who tells me they know this or that won't work for them... well, I feel bad for them. 

I wish them well, I hope they come around (as I finally did), but I'm not going to argue with them. I'm not going to waste my time explaining things over and over. I'm not going to be able to give them a secret that will bypass the stuff they don't want to do or don't think will work. I hope they get something out of what I'm teaching but I'm not sure they're going to really walk away with the change they seek.

And it's not because their circumstance is really so special that there is no hope for them, and it's not because I'm hiding the easier shortcuts to success from them. .They actually have more in common with a lot of people than they realize: they don't have actual limits, they have self-imposed limits

They are in a mindframe that continues to reinforce those limits on themselves, and until they are ready to let go of that frame of mind, they will have those limits. Until then, no one is going to have the answers for them that they're seeking.

My Tip for You Today: Don't be that student. You're only holding yourself back.

Have you ever imposed your own limits with a negative attitude?

ETA: After typing all this up, I see this-- talk about synchronicity:

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