Mindful Construct is not about saving the world.
Or saving people from their pain.
It’s here to inspire readers to save themselves.
And grow from their pain.
It’s a subtle difference, but one worth mentioning.
Blogging is about boundaries
Here’s a simplification of the blogging process:
- A blogger publishes their opinions (as do practically all other writers)
- Readers are free to agree, disagree, or do a little of both (voiced through comments or some other means)
When you create content and release it into the world, you notice the subtleties in how readers respond.
In order to blog with stamina and stick to your topic — you need to develop the right set of listening skills.
You need to know who you’re really writing for. Which means spotting out those who just want to ruin the party.
Yes, blogging is about connecting people, ideas, and crossing boundaries. But bloggers only have so much time and creative energy each day.
You have to channel those efforts to the right audience if you want to stick to your vision.
Writing for the right audience may seem like ignoring the wrong audience. Oftentimes it is.
I respond to the wrong audience when doing so can benefit the right audience. By juicing negative blog comments into constructive articles.
People who attack me don’t get my sympathy
It’s obvious when readers disagree with me. There’s nothing wrong with disagreeing.
But I have low tolerance for readers who take that to the next level. Who come by and personally attack what I write about — which is also a personal attack on the readers I write for.
It’s like walking your dog, stopping by my site, and letting your dog do its thing all over my lawn without bothering to pick up after yourself.
It’s a mess and rude. But not only that, it’s an insult. Like saying,
“Gee, I see that you have some articles here on the positive aspects of emotions, but I’m going to ignore all that and just spew about the negative aspects because I’m that fed up with life.”
That kind of person is not the kind of person I want to work with.
That’s the kind of person I want to alert readers about.
It’s a microcosm of the Mindful Construct model of emotional health:
Mindful Construct model of emotional health:
Deconstruct what the matrix tells you about distrusting your emotions and favoring “logic” instead. Pay attention and learn from your negative emotions, because they are your tools for growth.
The microcosm model of emotional health, found within Mindful Construct community interaction (i.e. comments):
While articles are geared toward the those wanting to work with their emotions, the naysayers are welcome to attack. When they attack, they attack the Mindful Construct model of emotional health, and indirectly attack the readers who are here to learn about and explore that model. Deconstruct what the naysayers tell you about distrusting your emotions and doing all that other stuff that undermines the Mindful Construct model of emotional health. Pay attention to and learn from the naysayers’ dysfunctional arguments — and especially deconstructing them — because they can be tools for your growth.
“Compassion” can lead to emotional suppression
“But the naysayers are in pain!” you may say. “That’s why they attack.”
Indeed, those who attack a constructive outlook on emotions have a dysfunctional relationship with their own emotions.
However, that’s no excuse for behavior meant to hurt or rile others.
If a boy hit a girl on the playground, and the girl came to you in tears, you’d think twice before telling her: “Cheer up, he’s doing it because he likes you!” or “Don’t worry, he’s unhappy about something else,” or “You can forgive him — he lives in a bad part of neighborhood.”
When someone attacks you in your life (it could be a minor offense), you can either feel the pain or subdue it.
Telling yourself the compassion story of “Oh, but he’s in a bad place/ Oh, but she must be having a rotten day/ Oh, but he clearly misunderstood me” — so as to talk yourself out of being blunt — is an excellent way to subdue your emotional response.
Why? Because it’s designed to distract you from feeling what you are actually feeling. From registering a boundary violation. From taking their actions personally.
But that’s not the only reason why I opt for a different response than the common notion of compassion.
I’m writing for the fighters
There are way too many articles to write than there is the time. That’s actually a blessing in disguise, it forces me to choose — who I write for.
I could spend my days trying to “save” the entire planet, and trying to “nurse” all those types that outwardly declare that they disagree with my perspective on emotional health — because goodness knows “they need it the most.”
That would be royal waste of my time, and it wouldn’t be all that compassionate either.
Anytime you try to make someone feel better. Or you try to change their mind so that they don’t feel crummy (by using compassion stories or some other deflection). You disrespect their right to their own attitude, even if it’s a toxic one.
That’s the opposite of compassion. It’s called caretaking, or enabling, and a common form of codependency.
I can’t afford to caretake naysayers. It sets a dysfunctional example. It interferes with writing for the fighters. It detracts from the goals of the site.
I’m writing for the fighters.
The fighters have to deal with the skeptics, technically-flamers, and incoherent arguers every single day.
That’s what’s on my mind when naysayers stop by. How can we look at this from a perspective that will help us fighters better deal and better cope?
I’m not here to make everyone feel better
So if people come by my site to moan, complain, or attack, I likely won’t be rushing to their side to try and make them “feel better.”
I respect what I’ve built enough to sort out those who acknowledge it, and those who want to invalidate it.
I’m not here for the critics. But when they leave a comment that can be deconstructed — in order to broaden perspective on emotional health — I’ll juice it. Simple as that.
If that’s too blunt to stomach, or it makes you squirm in your seat, there’s probably something worth looking at. As in, some negative emotional reaction. Will you work with it to learn more about yourself?
“But deconstructing comments isn’t nice”
Deconstructing anything isn’t nice. That’s why dysfunctional worldly systems fuel on — undeconstructed — every single day. Is that nice?
If you can’t talk openly about what people publicly and usually anonymously say on the world wide web, how can you expect to confront in-flesh people in your face?
“Nice” can be a self-destructive concept, carefully sheathed by social programming.
“But it’s not nice!” can really mean…
“Oh, but I don’t want to have to feel my negative emotions!” or “Oh, well I’d rather put the blame on you than take ownership for why I feel so affected (and thus having good reason to objectively assess my own mindful definition of “niceness”).”
And therein lie the workings of emotional suppression.
If you’re uncomfortable by my bluntness, you can always ask
Comments often indicate discomfort due to my bluntless in articles and comments. But they usually handle it in a roundabout way.
Such as by:
- Disagreeing without acknowledging my points
- Going off-topic as a distraction
- Reprimanding me for my actions (which can be passive aggressively indirect) or stating how I “should have” conducted myself differently
- Stating the opposite of an article topic (e.g. saying “Oh, everything is wonderful!” when the article is about the not-so-wonderful)
If an article or comment rubs you the wrong the way, start there.
You have an in-context opportunity to look at something upsetting or displeasing and bring it out in the open in a mindful way.
You’ve already been trained to suppress any inkling of discomfort. Stuff it down, down, down, until you can no longer feel (or think) straight. That’s the society — the matrix — you were born into.
Why not use this community as an opportunity to break your training?
Genuine questions come from a willingness to exchange perspectives for a moment, as well the courage to listen. Defensiveness and offensive arguing build walls, but heartfelt discussion builds character and legacy.
Response ability means nothing to you except in practice.
If you’re ready to practice response ability instead of just talking about it, you’ll find this community to be great training ground.
About the Author: Melissa Karnaze founded Mindful Construct to work with other fighters in exploring emotional resilience. Sign up for her free 10-part e-class on how to work with your emotions, which comes from understanding how your life is your construct.