"Divorce is hard, marriage is hard, choose your hard". I saw this post on someone else's content the other day and it immediately grabbed my attention. It did not leave me inspired. Instead, it left me questioning the sheer amount of content being shared with a subtle level of coercion. I have no doubt that at some point, I have contributed to the problem myself. I have probably hurt other people's feelings. I definitely hurt my own soul when I realized the gravity of black and whiteness of such sayings. This is not meant to be a rant or a dig at anyone. However, it's worth noticing the amount of coercive messages that's being given a platform in the content marketing era. It leaves people confused, feeling guilty and in some cases retraumatised. Even though, the writer's intention may never be the case, when one has a tunnel vision of creating a piece of content that is in congruent with their purpose of the business, there's no doubt that the other side of the coin is left unattended.
To put this into a context, imagine some of us saying this to Viktor Frankl. "Living in a concentration camp is hard, escaping the camp is hard. Choose your hard". Let that thought sink in.
We don't get to choose the parents, siblings, relatives, religions, socio economic backgrounds, childhood adverse experiences we endure. We may choose the partners, friends, work places but when done from a place of trauma bond, the cycle continues. And in some parts of the world, 'choice' is an arbitrary concept, specially for women. Yes, we have a choice in making decisions to break these patterns. As Viktor Frankl says "When we are no longer able to change a situation, we are challenged to change ourselves". What he has done in one sentence is to acknowledge life as it is. That's how he has penetrated the minds of people to inspire even the most trauma bonded humans. Context matters. A spherical view matters. Acknowledgement of life for what it is matters.
As a person who have chosen both hard options; 'marriage' and 'divorce', I have faced and healed and still healing from the complex range of emotions that arise with every step of the way. Nothing is black and white and simple and there are no right or wrong paths to choose in these situations. As much as healing is a priority in facing any journey in our lives, when faced with practical issues under those difficult circumstances, people often are left confused and traumatised. That's why I believe that such black and white out of the context statements are damaging. I hold no moral high ground here. I have admitted to having written and published such quotes in the past and I have no doubt that I may slip up in the future despite my best efforts to remain transparent. My intention here is to bring to the attention of the people that ultimately, the onus is on us as the individuals to filter out what we read. Never let someone else make you feel guilty about a situation that you are in. Inspiration does not come from a place of guilt. It comes from a place of enlightenment and insight. Subtle coercion result in guilt and confusion instead of inspiration and insight. Such guilt is an oasis for 'selling' a product or a service. As much as coaching and therapy are incredible supporting tools for life, when sold to us from such a coerced space, the entire process loses its credibility. I have no doubt that I have hurt people in the selling process trying to do that. Nevertheless, I continue to learn.
Having worked with many people who are stuck in difficult situations, for various different reasons, I have come to an increasing awareness that when people are boxing in the dark in situations like that, we as spectators must not tell them the directions of the hit. It simply does not work. Shining a light on such complex issues must be done with caution, care and transparency.
To put things into a deeper context, I am calling out a few more statements that I came across recently.
"Life is meant to be fun, if it's not ask why and change it"
My view - Life is not meant to be anything. Life is just is.
"Don't quit when you are burnt out, create more energy"
My view - What a load of bullshit! Rest and reset. Energy is not generated from an exhausted place. It comes from a place of silence and rest.
"Don't ask people what you do for a living. It's disrespectful"
My view - It's all about the context. If you mean disrespect, it will come across that way. If you mean curiosity, interest in the other person's life, it will come across that way.
"I am done asking people 'if that's o.k?'"
My view - Using linguistic components to establish a two way communication is absolutely the right thing to do. This does not lessen your value. Self-worth is not about being arrogant and ignorant. Self-worth is being open and civil to others.
It's already turned out to be a very long blog. So, I am going to stop it here. I would like to invite you to take part in the conversation. What are your views?
Parenting Coach/Relationship Coaching
Life Coaching/EFT/Matrix Reimprinting/NLP