Out of frustration comes philosphy

I’ve spent the week cleaning up someone else’s mess at work.

All the while awaiting news of an anticipated new job, so it’s not like I was particularly motivated to invest my time and energy in a not-my-problem problem.

I overheard a conversation at the gym a few days ago, where one woman was complaining to another on behalf of an instructor who’d gotten stuck with all the equipment cleanup after everyone (but the complainer, obviously) had left the class a few minutes early.

“Why’d she take it upon herself to do it, though?” said the not-so-sympathetic listener, huffily.

“Oh, she’s just like that.”

I lost the rest of the thread of the conversation, but that one comment stayed with me. It’s still reverberating now.

Why did I take it upon myself?

On the one hand, I certainly understand, and admire, the pluck it takes not to take it all on. To draw the line, take a stand, call it quits. To use impatience and aggression as virtues.

On the other hand, I think decisions are made by those who show up. Who use stubbornness as their crutch.

Both types of people may be equally annoyed. But the outcomes are going to be vastly different.

And that’s why I took it upon myself. Because I fall into the latter camp. But combined with treating the world the way that I want to be treated in return, I’ve had to learn to handle disappointment.

You get out of life what you put into it. Other people’s muck and all.

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