Monday, February 7, 2011

Cutting the Crap

Honesty.  With yourself.  With others.

That's my definition of personal responsibility.

A couple of years ago while talking with a friend about weight loss, we came to the conclusion that, in all honesty, we were overweight because we ate more calories than we burned. 

That's it.  Cut the crap.

Not because our thyroids were out of whack, not because we had too much to do and not enough time to exercise or cook healthy foods, not because... blah blah blah.

The excuses can be endless and overwhelming.  And in the end, that's all they are... excuses.

I've since taken that approach  to just about every issue I've encountered.  Sometimes with the help of that close circle of friends that reminds me to cut the crap and sometimes I can pare it away myself.

It's funny how we can try to excuse our way out of our own selfishness, laziness, greed or whatever happens to be your weakness.  Your real weakness, when you cut away the crap, is hard to hear. 

My kids, for example, don't always do a good job at the task they've been assigned.  Is it because they're bad kids? No, they're great kids.  But they are kids and kids will only do what is inspected not what is expected.  If I'm being too lazy (or selfish) to drop what I'm doing to inspect the job, I can almost always find myself disappointed with the results.

The kids, on the other hand, cannot use that as their excuse.  They all know how to correctly accomplish the task at hand.  Personal responsibility dictates that they cut the crap and fully do what is expected of them.  Period. 

In society today not many people can cut the crap and put the blame on their crumby circumstances on themselves.  

I was listening to the radio the other day and I heard Mark Gungor's Better Marriage Minute.  I can't find the exact quote but it went something like this:

100% of divorces happen because one or both spouses become selfish.

Talk about cutting the crap.  

I came across a book that was title something like Get Off Your Butt and Parent.  Needless to say, I didn't need to read it... I knew all to well what my problem was.

It's rather easy (if you're willing) to chisel away the excuses to get to the real issues when you're studying the 10 commandments (again?) with your children.  Go ahead, dust off your Catechism.  Give it a whirl.  We've clouded even the only 10 commands God has given us to obey with excuses.

Yikes!  I could list something under every commandment that I deal with regularly.  Murder?  Not me!  But always being patient, kind, and forgiving from our hearts towards everyone?   Once again, not me.  

Recently I've begun praying for awareness of my sins.  Yikes again!  Without awareness, how can I ever change?  If I can't cut the crap, see my sin for what it is, how can I truly repent?  I thank God every day for His grace. 

Although, I don't think all crap is sinful.   My personal convictions may not be yours.  BUT if you are lying to yourself... allowing yourself to be a victim of your circumstances... you may be missing out on a lot of opportunities.  Opportunities you never thought were available to you because of your thinking.

A single word can make a difference in your whole outlook.  Take, for instance, Want and Need.  If you can differentiate between the two your whole life could change.

scrape   scrape   scrape

The sound of my soapbox coming to the front.  There are only two things that I'm outspokenly passionate about in life, and this is one of them.

Moms That Say They Need To Work. 

Before you load your catapult with rotten tomatoes, hear me out.  

One little word could put you in control of your situation and give you peace or hope or whatever it is you think you might be missing.  One little word could change the way you think.

Moms, do you really need to work outside the home?   If you want to, that's your choice, just quit telling everyone (and yourself) that you have to work to make ends meet.

In all honesty, if you cut the crap, making ends meet can be defined as maintaining the standard of living that you are accustomed to. 

Are you standards too high?  If you really thought things through...

Is cable a necessity?  Do you really need 2 vehicles?  Is there a bus route close by?  Do you eat out more than in?  Do you need a cell phone?  Is your cell phone plan the cheapest out there?  Do you have internet on your phone and at home?

These are only a few (and the easiest) categories to  simplify.  I've got a ton of them up my sleeve. 

When it comes right down to the wire... Are you sacrificing your children's need for direct parental involvement to your own selfishness?

Ouch.  I know right?

If the answer indubitably is NO then you can rest assured that your choices are working for your family.  Kudos to you... most people can't successfully juggle it all and come out unscathed.

If NO doesn't come so easy... or if you can whisper yes... redefine your situation.  Assess your wants versus your needs.  You can make a change, you do not need to be a victim.  Take a stand, do it for your family, you'll never regret it.

If you're stuck, I'd like to help.

Let's talk.


midnight hysteria said...

awesome post .... love it ... i copied it and sent it to a daughter ... we both have the *overeating* gene and decided, a couple of weeks ago when i was visiting her, that, yes, it's US, not the *GENE* that's making us fat(ter) ... LOL ...

thanks for the *telling it like it is* ... not many want to hear this! keep it up .... darlene

Sandy said...

Kari this was great. I'm so pleased that you continue to be my friend after so many years, perhaps I'm one of the mom's you speak of, see everyones situation is different. You bring up some very good points. However, everyone sins and most of us recognize that we sin everyday, be it a disheartening word to another, sex - as it's written, is supposed to be for procreation only, perhaps it is being "selfish" as you call it. But really we all do the best we can with what we've got. For those of us recovering "shopaholics" I just won't be able to spend as much. I'll have to do couponing, and continue to buy off brands at the grocery store. But I will continue to be selfish, as I do need and require alone time, selfish in the manner to protect and help my family and those who will allow me to help them, rather than assuming I'm doing it for a different reason. I don't need to do good for others and "blab" it all over the place so others think highly of me. As of late, I think that through the many opinions of others, I've been cast as an outsider...someone to "beware" of. Well, I hope that after the many years we've known each other, you continue to have the same opinion of me...YOUR opinion, not hindered by other's lies, deceptions, etc. As you know, we're each judged in the end anyway. So we should all hold off on our own judgement. Right? Hoping to hear from you soon. Sandy

Kari said...

Oh Sandy, I'll always love you! You're right... we're all sinners and everyone of us needs to think for our selves. One thing I wanted to point out to you though... Biblically, sex is NOT only for procreation. It's a gift, given by God, to married couples to be used to enjoy each other and isn't it wonderful that babies are made of that?!?!? Can't wait to see you too.