Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Deconstructing the autobiography one blog at a time

It has long been a thought in my head the the best life stories are never completely non-fiction. Although Oprah and probably most publishers have a different view, I believe that embellishment of one's life experience tells it's own sub story which gives and incredible depth, dimension and insight to the main character's, well, character...

It's a view, a glimpse into the mind of the story teller. Did he make the story completely self-agrandizing, does he or she show the need for acceptance, or the desire for fame, is he pre-occupied with one-upping others in an effort to boost his own sense of self-worth, or is he merely telling the story as he experienced it? It's fascinating to creep into an individual's psyche this way and try to figure out how a person views himself by deconstruction the story and reading the subtext. Because whether or not we mean to, we all have a sub-text. And I believe that sub-text changes as we change and grow as individuals, which is why I find blogs so interesting.

I have been delinquent in my blog regularity and often find that I get overwhelmed with exactly WHAT I should blog about. Questions and contemplation often interfere with my free-flow of ideas and expression of them. Will this be interesting?  Is this too much information? Am I being too sarcastic? Can I make a point without offending someone?  The list goes on and it all comes back to that sub-text of writing so that the reader sees me the way I want to be perceived. It's the written equivalent of hair and make up. Am I presenting myself in a way that coincides with who I am, who I want to be? So I'm making a conscious effort to address that today. The reality is (as Popeye so eloquently said) Iyam-whad-Iyam.

I tend to over-analyze. I try to put myself in other situations to view things from other people's perspectives. I try to be kind. I try to be assertive and true to myself, I try not to preach or push my views on others while expecting others to take a minute to consider mine without judgement.  I try to live authentically.

I believe we can all learn from everyone who crosses our paths everyday. I believe that if you want to learn a new skill you just do it. I believe that we will all turn older at our next birthday (30, 40, 50, 60 etc...) but I do not believe that those milestones should pass with the thought that "Now I'm too old to learn piano, or how to paint, or how to bake a perfect ciabatta"  I believe that if you use those excuses you just turn older, not wiser. I believe that if we continue to learn new things we grow older and wiser but feel younger.  I believe that stress is a waste of my time. I believe that spending time with negative people or crazy-makers is completely unnecessary, and I believe that telling them I won't expend any time or energy on them only makes them more negative and crazy, but that's their problem. I believe I should not feel sorry for people who play the victim role every day of their lives in order to control and manipulate people and situations to their liking. I believe people should stop looking for others to blame for their own shortcomings. I believe in personal accountability. I believe the tv should be turned off and the kids should be sent outside to play. I believe the cel phones should be taken away during dinner and dates and drive time and face to face interactions should become a priority again. I believe that courtesy needs to be revived.

I prefer survivors to victims. I prefer artists to critics, I prefer humor and sarcasm to pollyana-esque behavior. I prefer to see things for myself, rather than take the word of others. I prefer to roll up my shirt sleeves and do the work to get the results.  I prefer happy to sad but understand that without each other both would be meaningless.  

I believe in being flexible and know that without flexibility even the most monumental buildings will crumble to the ground if their earth begins to shake. I believe that everyday has teachable moments. I believe that a smile gets you further than an air of superiority. I believe that I will continue to make mistakes and learn from them. I do not believe that you should get a trophy just for showing up. I believe that my subtext will continue to morph as I live my life and I'm okay with that.

What's your subtext? If you wash off the makeup and let the hair down, what really lies beneath?