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Bad Manners and Juggling

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Juggling combinations of Keystone and Satellite Problems generate chaos in the lives of far too many Black Americans. That combination reminds me of a boyhood cartoon of a bolder chasing the Pink Panther (my favorite) until he stopped, found a sledge hammer, broke the bolder into 50 pieces. But he had to resume running when each of those pieces started chasing him. Similarly, what is being juggled on a daily basis produces invariable happenings to the things juggled and they fragment when some additional traumatic or emergency event happens--often as a result of ones own bad habits. Let us use Bad Manners as an example. In African Tradition, Bad Manners are the lack of demonstration of caring about the feelings of others. An example is Jugglers who fail to say "Thank you" to those of us who help them. For example, many people across the USA and in surrounding lands (e.g. the Caribbean Islands) write and ask me for help with some Black history problem--for problematic programs; for themselves; or for setting up Black youth programs. To get information from consultants and to do the extensive research to address their issues can take up to three days. But following relaying my findings to the inquiring person, at no time has anyone ever said "Thank you" or responded. To hopefully gain some insight into the "Why?" of this fascinating circumstance I again consulted Patricia Riddlespriger.

She said despite seeing themselves as too "busy," they are probably thankful for the information and probably use it. Yet, they do not follow through with a response because they are Jugglers who become so distracted by events in their lives as to lose accountability. Because of all the various thoughts and images that pop into their minds and by being unable to focus, they are essentially out of control. In other words, they fail to make the time to respond to me because they have to satisfy all that is going on in their lives. In the process, what I supply is like a bite of food or like giving a marathon runner a drink during the run. Nevertheless, to fail to tell people "Thank you" for something they did and were not forced to do means they might not do it again. Also, the Giver might not think to offer that impolite person an opportunity when it comes up because he/she is "too busy." Bad habits, typically associated with the appearance of being ill-mannered to those not in the in-group of Jugglers, come from not knowing; a lack of proper socialization; and self-absorption leading to bad thinking or bad emotions. Although Bad Habits are "normal" to the Juggler's in-group peers, outsiders say they are bad manners. When outsiders label Jugglers with a bad reputation, those Jugglers are subsequently ignored or have dumped on them things that increase the need to juggle.

"Cell-phone Addicts" are typically distracted from a face-to-face conversation to answer the phone and think that is "normal." Perhaps they fail to realize this as an act of rudeness to the person waiting for the conversion to end. To addicts it is such an emotionally soothing "fix" as to divert their attention from showing manners--a "Detour" type of multi-tasking. Another bad manner habit is "Forgetting"--a defense and coping mechanism the Slaves used to help them endure. But when it got out of control, called Mental Evasion, it had the effect of causing them to be blind to things of significant in the present and for the future, giving the impression of bad manners to Mentors. Extreme Mental Evasion does not allow one to attach much importance to beneficial information and therefore that information is easily forgotten, despite it being very important. Because of this "Forgetting" and because Evasion helps block out painful memories, one does not tend to learn from bad experiences. Forgetting Habits do have a place but those which enhance juggling should be replaced by means of focused attention in order to extract lessons and benefit from them. Bad habits, bad manners, forgetting, and mental evasions are part of the mindset of Chronic Jugglers.

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