I woke up this morning in some sort of a Moment Of Clarity.  I had a phrase in my head that kept pounding on my forehead until I said it.  “Uphill Battle”.  What a terrible thought…  to not only be involved in some sort of battle, but also to have to battle gravity & momentum & inertia & centrifugal force & all the other physics theories that I never learned.  Seems like a hard situation with no end or hope in sight.  And I think that’s been my place for a while.  I don’t mean to throw a pitty party.  I mean only to unpack my idea a little.  Like a kid opening a gift on Christmas, only the gift would be criticism & guilt, the Christmas morning would be every monday morning, and the wrapping paper would be much the same as the kid’s wrapping paper because i can’t find a parallel to that.

If you’re rewarded for doing good, you’ll keep doing good to keep getting the reward.  That’s called positive reinforcement.  When you do poorly and get punished, you try to stop the poor behavior because you don’t want the punishment, and that’s called Negative reinforcement.  But what happens when you’re ignored for good behavior, but instead criticized for totally unrelated things?  Well, after two hours with my personal counselor, I’ve gotten a few new insights.  First, the lack of praise comes from insecurity.  Moving on to criticism about other things is a diversion tactic, and is used to mask insecurities, as well as build a higher ground, or a ‘dominant position’ in the arrangement.

That looks like this…

Guy 1:”dude, how’d the soup i made you taste?”
Guy 2:”yeah, sure, ok, you made soup like i asked.  By the way, your spoons are really not what i like to use to eat soup.”
Guy 1:”well, ok.  i can change them if you’re serious, but i think it’s not a big deal.”
Guy 2:”I don’t like the spoons, and if you do, you’re not a team player and shouldn’t be here.”
Guy 1:”so you want me to leave?  Over spoons?”
Guy 2:”The soup was bad, and the spoons are dumb.  don’t ask for criticism if you don’t want the truth.”

Moral of the story… don’t make soup for guy 2.  His first name should really be Prichard.*

*Prichard is much like Richard, as it’s just the full name for what he should really be called.