An important to do list to a better, happier, more successful life: This is a life saving and happiness recovery strategy. The metaphor is the warning you get when you’re on an airliner: in case of sudden loss of cabin air pressure, put the oxygen mask on yourself first and then help others.This document reflects the ongoing loss of civility and decency in our lives and is designed to be your civility and decency “oxygen mask”. Do these for yourself first. That will enable you to help others.
Steps to Removing Indecency and Incivility from Your Life
1. If the perpetrator is someone you know, find someone else to know. Skip the good-byes.
2. If the perpetrator or predator is your boss, find a new boss
3. If the source is from someone you buy things from, find another source.
4. If the source is someone in public life, disavow them as vocally as you can. Support others.
5. If it comes from your local pulpit, find another pulpit.
6. Spend your energy on building a better life, expectations, and circumstances for yourself and those you care about, rather than trying to change or reform the perpetrators and predators.
7. Perpetrators, predators, public figures, and leaders never really change. Your efforts are far better spent on new endeavors and new approaches where you can clearly make a difference and others will benefit, more than you.
8. Predators and perpetrators are superb con artists. They are constantly in the hunt for new targets. They are experts at shifting the blame back to you. Call them out, root them out then get out.
The main objections I hear about this strategy is that it is so defensive, and insensitive. Why not stay and fight? My advice is to always move toward a better life, every day. Perpetrators and predators are not waiting and refuse to be saved. It may seem noble to try, but perpetrators and predators are only looking for additional victims. For the perpetrators and predators it is always about the next successful hunt.To keep you on the hook, predators and perpetrators fake change for a while, while always hunting for new victims.When you raise the issue they will seem surprised, or immediately turn your situation around on you. Trust me, you will walk or run away blaming yourself and feeling guilty. Why, for even a minute?But Jim, some will say, you’re acting irrationally. “You’re being selfish.” “The facts and the truth will prevail, eventually.” “You have an obligation to try.” Baloney. Yes, the situation is irrational and immune to facts, data and the truth. Third parties muddy the water. Unconscionable actions, decisions and behaviors are intentional, premeditated, injurious, degrading, …and unethical. Evil is irrational. Your belly will warn you. Move away from it. There are people who will run toward Evil but that’s their life. They always welcome your company, then you both become stuck to the issues.In their process the result will be the same. The predators and the intermediaries will require you to at least share the blame, sometimes called the “balanced approach” (which ultimately means you will get all or most of the blame while protecting and justifying the behaviors of irrational, unethical, and often greedy people). The intermediary will write a best seller about it, outlining your weaknesses. Other victims will blame you. Move on and miss all that.Having a happy, useful, productive, honorable, meaningful, civil and decent life is up to you, always.Focus and aim to find others seeking happiness. They and you will have better lives.