Tuesday, February 18, 2020

Our first duty is to ourselves

While eavesdropping on a conversation between two friends on the subway, one woman made a comment that baffled and bothered me. 

She was describing the relationship with her spiritual guru, sheepishly admitting the following:

You surrender your life to this person. They make a lot of big decisions for you. And it’s so easy to give them too much power in your life. 

Sounds more like manipulation than leadership. 

However, there is a porous boundary between the two. 

Because on one hand, masters and mentors have valuable experience to draw from, information and data that we don’t have, and insight and perspective that might be helpful. We humble ourselves at their feet. 

On the other hand, recklessly believing that any one person holds sole authority over the decisions we make is dangerous. Our first duty is always to ourselves. 

Like most things in this world, it all goes back to power dynamics. Especially when it comes to mentors and masters. We get dragged along in a mesmerizing current, swept inexorably toward a decision that could very well destroy us, but we fail to realize it because we are under a spell. 

Maybe because we made a significant emotional or financial investment. 

Maybe because we worship the ground someone walks upon and don’t want to disappoint them. 

Maybe because we have not learned to trust ourselves yet and are temporarily outsourcing our faith. 

The list goes on like a blind man circling the earth. There are as many motivations for giving away our power as there are people to give it to. 

What matters at the end of the day is, there is always a way to maintain our power in a situation. It requires intention, attention, setting boundaries, and carries the risk of upsetting, disappointing and even alienating people. 

Which sounds like lot of work, but nobody said that our duty to ourselves would be easy. 

LET ME ASK YA THIS...

Are you more concerned with making the right decisions or making decisions right? 

* * * *
Scott Ginsberg
That Guy with the Nametag
Author. Speaker. Strategist. Inventor. Filmmaker. Publisher. Songwriter.  
scott@hellomynameisscott.com
www.nametagscott.com

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