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Cares and Taking Care in Different Ways

Being careful leads to better living, generally speaking.

There may be a way

In our quest for personal privacy, can we really keep the family's private affairs private? We have to make our own evaluations. (Luna 2012, Chap 3.)

Luna also says,

On January 27, 1960, during a brief encounter on a quiet back street in Santa Cruz de Tenerife, I asked [a member of Spain's Secret Police] for advice on how best to avoid any problems in the land of Generalissimo Francisco Franco. The advice he gave me has served me well for more than fifty years. He said there was only one way to avoid troubles with the authorities:

"Make yourself invisible."

(Ib. Dedication)

To make themselves invisible, some apply Patanjali Yoga Sutras 3.21:

By perfectly concentrated Meditation [sanyama] on the form of the body, by arresting the body's perceptibility, and by inhibiting the eye's power of sight, there comes the power to make the body invisible. (Yoga Sutras 3:21)

See for yourself!

Self-esteem and getting out of reach

Self-esteem that results from a sense of extraneous competence and accomplishments, may collapse. A beneficial approach is of the Self, mainly. Acceptance of the Self is an awareness-based form of self-regard. Several beliefs that are very much inculcated in Western Society may lead to neuroses when acted on compulsively and blindly. Consider these points:

  • It is rarely good to go for getting loved or approved by everyone we know. It could result in being less self-directed and more insecure and unhappy. A rational person does not sacrifice his or her own interests and desires in order to be admired, but rather strives to express them well enough.
  • It is often not feasible to be perfectly competent, adequate and achieving to be worthwhile. To strive compulsorily for results in a constant fear of failure is seldom the best to do, for perfectionist standards quickly alienate partner and friends.
  • Solid blame and punishment do not usually result in a less stupid, better and less neurotic personality. Yet, behavior and ethics can and must be judged, if law and order are to prevail.
  • A rational person avoids exaggerating unpleasant situations, and works at improving or remedying them when and if it fits.
  • What is unknown or uncertain may cause great concern and make coping less effective and add to distress
  • To avoid life's difficulties and responsibilities may or may not lead to later complications and problems, or a good life, as the case may be.
  • Dependency may lead into loss of individuality, and so may reliance on a higher authority too.
  • Good relationships are hardly based on mutual sacrifice and rewarding just giving over and above getting. This belief rests on the assumption that it is better to give than receive, that it is bad or wrong to be selfish.
  • Old patterns and ways of responding result from old decisions. Peoples' problems and difficulties around us can be quite disturbing. Yet they should not run over our own lives and feelings.
  • A widespread belief is that there is 'perfect love' and a perfect relationship.
  • When people disapprove of you, you can either take it or leave it.

Self-indoctrination throughout life may result in emotional disturbance or neuroses - people become inhibited, hostile, defensive, guilty, ineffective, inert, afraid and unhappy, in part as a result of internalised, unreasonable 'shoulds,' 'oughts' and 'musts'.

(This section is rooted in Peter Shepherd's book Daring to Be Yourself [2007, the foreword's section "Self-esteem versus Self-acceptance"])

Careful with care

"It was my care to make my life illustrious not by words more than by deeds." - Sophocles

If some who take care of others get much bossy for it, something or someone has gone wrong. If, on the other hand, you are careful with care some ways or others, the cared for could as a result develop friskly and come into their own. Tact can mean a lot.

There are some who get over-careful, and neurotic from it, step by step. It is a glide down. Others get over-careful about spending money, and hoards instead. That can become a disease too, miserliness has its degrees and shortcomings.

Those who are too little careful, that is careless, lackadaisal, may come to suffer in time, for example for not being protected while having sex with strangers.

It also happens that careful people will not show off as careful, just to be better off than those who display everything.

See the broad influence of habits

We may commit to change one small habit. Once a new habit is reasonably well established, it could bring changes to other parts of your life as well. For example, managing a kitchen or seeking to write neatly. Changing how you greet people might change meetings also. (Ellis and Lankowitz 1995, 156)

Many get duped by words

- and thus show they have not been careful enough about it. Freaking gullibility is a major problem. It could pay to be careful, taking care, showing fit regard, attentive concern when it matters; showing wary caution and prudence so as not to fail. A part of being careful is avoiding errors and omissions. At times it is proper attention to detail that is the thing, at other times it is being cautious to avoid mistakes. At still other times proper and fitting attentiveness to fine points could be the thing to aim at.

If you have not learnt to Take Care in the realm of words, a proverb may come in handy: "Big words don't fatten the cabbage." One should guard oneself against being taken in and duped by big words, fine-sounding words and phrases on the other hand, and seek to be accurate and fair enough in presenting things oneself. Here is help if applied somewhat. And try to ask for evidence - that can be big help. Click on 'Reservations' above to find further ideas in the field of accurate expressions, being carefully, meticulously guarded, and so on.

Words of Success

You may have noted that many more books are written on making success than on keeping your assets throughout life. Guarding oneself must not be overlooked in a hunt for success. Being careful and sifting some of the things in life well, is also fit to learn about. As a matter of fact, many success quotations on the Internet are fit for surface play only, even though some have old roots, classical roots. Here are some:

Seize this very minute [and the next, and so on]. Only begin. - Goethe - [Yes, how to seize time-and-matter well enough?]

The characteristic of genuine heroism is persistency. - Emerson [Mere persistency may not do, though. Take that into account too.]

[Persistency in what?] Don't saw sawdust. - Dale Carnegie

You have to believe in yourself. That's the secret of success. - Charlie Chaplin

Never despair. - Horace

Great thinkers are people who dare to be themselves. - Norman Vincent Peale

Man's first duty? The answer's brief: To be himself. - Henrik Ibsen

A still better duty is to be oneself well, at least well enough.

No man ever yet become great by imitation. - Samuel Johnson

To live is to risk death, and merely to try is to risk failure.

There was never a night that had no morn. - Dinah Maria Craik [She appears to speak against what happens at Svalbard each year.]

Success is to be measured by what you are able to do too.

By perseverance the snail reached the oak. - Charles Haddon Spurgeon [But what would it do there?]

Undue haste is the mother of failure, said the snail. - Cf. Heridotus

Don't be a slug of success, but keep some sound norms.

The toughest thing about being a success is that you've got to keep on being a success. - Irving Berlin.

Try not to become a man of success but rather a man of value. - Albert Einstein [But you can be both. That is the idea of Gentle Hinduism for Many and Buddha's Gentle Middle Way. It is fine to combine them.

Established ways of advancing wisely

We may adhere to established ways of winning and do tolerably well in time. Winning ways may not be so easily arrived at and maintained. Good schooling helps, and adequate mathematics, computations, estimates, and so on, at times too.

Insider teachings may be arrived at through cracking metaphors open and decoding secrets. Some are good, some are fair.

Think of an impressionistic painter. There are perhaps symbolic items in his drawings. After some time experts think they have arrived at his meanings by cracking his subtle symbolism. And yet it shows up that the originality and focus of each individual expert lends something of him or her to the painting, like a colouring applied to it, figuratively speaking.

Judged from this and much else, plan your responses by being tough and reserved enough: stick solidly to the well established responses till you feel sure you have grasped something very valuable and can afford to promote it. The latter part may eventually cost more than you're initially aware of.

So study so as to Take Good Care, as part of the tactical sides to living.

Finish too

During the Winter Olympics in Lillehammer several years ago someone was interviewing Kjell Aamodt who ultimately won the slalom: "Kjell, this is the greatest collection of skiers on the most difficult course ever designed. What's it going to take to medal today?"

Aamodt said: "Well, I think you have to finish first, second, or third."

[Tom Bergstrom]

Taking care, Literature  

Ellis, David B., and Stan Lankowitz. 1995. Human Being: A Manual for Happiness, Health, Love, and Wealth. Rapid City, SD: Breakthrough Enterprises.

Luna, J. J. 2012. How to Be Invisible: Protect Your Home, Your Children, Your Assets, Your Life. 3rd ed. New York: St. Martin Press.

Shepherd, Peter. 2007. Daring to Be Yourself. Seattle WA: Amazon Digital Services.

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