Sunday, March 31, 2013

Message #27 - Anger Is An Energy Suck!

You may be young and strong – a bundle of energy – an “I can do anything” type.  Good for you.

Or you may be, let’s call it, more mature – older than the young studs/ladies.  Not quite the same as 20 years ago, but not bad.

It doesn’t matter.  Young or old.  High energy/Low energy.  Sometimes you get mad.  And when you do you pay a price.  There’s a cost.

Because Anger is an Energy Suck!

You can see it in the other guy.  Watch somebody go off, rant and rave, get pissed.  After the outburst has run its course, how does he look?  Wiped out.  Drained.  Tired.  Like it or not, the same thing happens when you are the ranter.

So is it worth it?  And if it isn’t, what can you do about it?  Not get mad when you’re mad? Pretend you’re not angry?

That won’t work.  You can’t stop yourself from having an emotion when you’re in the grip of the emotion.  But what you can do is realize what’s going on.  Rather than being consumed by the emotion, unable to think beyond it, you can take a look at yourself and notice the effect it’s having on you and those on the receiving end of your anger.

Wait!  What if you are the one on the receiving end of your anger?  How can that be?  Easy.  By being angry and suppressing it.  Stuffing it.  Suppressing your anger is like filling your insides with corrosive acid.  It’ll eat you up.

When you’re in the midst of being angry the idea that you’ll pay a price for your behavior isn’t what you’re thinking about.  I know that.  Quite the reverse, you’ll seem energized by all the stuff that’s spewing out of you or gathering inside you.  It may even feel good in the moment.

All that is a temporary phenomenon.  When you’ve finished you’ll feel it.  Because Anger is an Energy Suck!

So, you say, I’m damned if I do and damned if I don’t.  I’ll suffer irrespective of whether I express my anger outwardly or inwardly.  Yes you will, unless . . .

There’s another possibility too.  It may be that if you can see yourself behaving irresponsibly you’ll put a halt to it.  Maybe – just maybe – sounding off or suppressing isn’t the best way to achieve what you’re trying to achieve.  So let’s say you stop talking or yelling or stop suffering silently.  Now you’re headed toward a double payoff, a perfecta.  You won’t have to clean up the mess your anger creates in your relationship with – whoever.  You’ll also preserve your energy.

You may think your warehouse of energy is limitless.  Wrong.  No matter who you are you have a finite amount of energy.  So conserving it, not wasting it frivolously, is a smart thing to do.

Be the first in your crowd to recognize that you don’t have to allow anger to get you by the throat.  There are other ways to express yourself, to get what you want.  And so do yourself a favor – be smart . . . Because Anger is an Energy Suck!

Tuesday, March 26, 2013


I see that Tiger Woods is back to #1 in the rankings.  I also see that my attitude is “That’s nice, but I really don’t care.”

That’s not the way it would have been a few years ago.  I was a fan, wanting him to win everything, eagerly watching for some magic from him on the golf course. 

It’s not that I’m now anti-Tiger.  I’m OK if he wins.  I’m also OK if he loses.  I just don’t have an emotional investment in him.  Near as I can tell, my current attitude doesn’t date back to when his life and his game went into the toilet.  It’s more something that has evolved.  I continue to admire his skill.  I don’t admire who he is. 

So for me Tiger is now someone who doesn’t interest me very much.  Too bad.  I really did enjoy him in the olden days.

Saturday, March 23, 2013

When Credit Is Due!

Good for Netanyahu for apologizing to the Turks for the Israeli raid at sea that killed a bunch of people a couple of years ago.  I never thought the stiff-necked Israelis would be willing to admit they were wrong.  And good for Obama, who brokered this reconciliation.  For a change, everyone wins.

Monday, March 18, 2013


A friend of mine says that cynicism limits imagination.  When I look at what I am cynical about it seems to me that he is right.  For example:

Some hope that with a new Pope the Catholic Church will take steps to be more in line with 21st century values.  Yes, there is a chance that the tone will change.  But any fundamental changes?  No way.

Some think that the Newtown killings and frequent instances of angry or unbalanced people slaughtering innocents with guns will move Congress to enact some gun control laws.  At least some small steps will be taken.  Again, no way.  Laws that would actually make a difference won’t happen.

Some hold out hope that common sense and a commitment to the good of the country will result in politicians deciding to negotiate in good faith and break the dysfunction logjam that has rendered our government impotent.  Don’t bet on it.  It ain’t gonna happen, any more than . . .

Big money will leave the political arena, so that our elected officials can concentrate on doing their jobs rather than focusing on raising money and getting reelected.  If you think that’s going to happen you probably also think corporate and money from the mega-rich will stop corrupting our system of government.  Good luck to you.

Some hopeful observers of the Supreme Court think that maybe, maybe, the Court will not gut the Civil Rights Act on the basis that it is no longer necessary.  Sure.  Just like Scalia and Thomas will take the lead in promoting gay marriage.  Don’t hold your breath.

There are people who think that Israel will see that their survival as a democracy requires some accommodation with the Palestinians, preferably a two-state solution.  There was a time when I was one of those people.  I’d like to be wrong, but a settler mentality combined with righteous certainty will doom the process.

I could go on, but I’ll stop with one more.  As with Iraq, which was a mistake that cost thousands of lives and more than a trillion dollars, we will leave Afghanistan having produced neither a lasting peace or a functional government and only a minimal impact on terrorism.  What a waste.

So yes, I stand accused and plead guilty to cynicism limiting my imagination.

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Today's Quiz!

Should we care?

How long it takes for the 115 old men in the Vatican to choose a Pope?
That the North Koreans are threatening to nuke us?
That Karzai is bad-mouthing the U.S. again?
That competing budget plans put out by the Republicans and Democrats offer nothing new?
Whether Tiger Woods wins the Masters?
If the President has the power, on his own, to execute Americans who are deemed a threat?
Whether sugary drinks should be limited to 16 oz. servings in New York City?
That a really big asteroid will come close to the earth one of these days soon?
That Obama is making nice(r) with Congress?
If the Boeing 787 batteries get fixed?
That anti-abortionists are gaining strength?
That the NRA is not losing strength?
That in the U.S. there are more declared atheists than there used to be?


Yes or No is in the eye of the beholder.

Thursday, March 07, 2013

Blog Comments!

Every day I receive several emails informing me that an anonymous person has commented about one of my posts on this blog site.  I am asked to either post the comment or reject it.  Sometimes the comment is gibberish.  Usually it is a complement about what I’ve written meant to lure me into posting the comment.  Inevitably, such complements are accompanied by a link to a blog site promoting this that or the other thing.

I never post these comments.  I reject and delete them.  I do happily post comments made by people who have something useful to say about the post in question.  It doesn’t matter whether the writer agrees with me or not; what is important is that they are furthering the conversation.

I suspect that these anonymous comments are phishing expeditions never seen by a real person.  I don’t know what the mechanism is that makes it happen.  Sometimes the comment is about a recent post; often it references a post from months or even years ago.  It’s an annoyance that seems to be happening more and more frequently.  So far it isn’t enough of a disturbance to cause me to abandon this blog site, so I shall continue in the hope that those of you who actually read these posts find them thought-provoking.