The Bitch Slap: Stop it Right Fucking Now

Talk to the hand. Then talk to yourself.How much time do you spend trying to fix other people? Other people’s problems? Other people’s LIVES?

How often do you complain there’s not enough time to do everything you want to do?

How much of your time do you spend feeling overwhelmed by things that seem to pile-up?

Stop it.

Stop it right fucking now.

Other People: Are just that. Other People. You cannot change them, “fix” them and you cannot live anyone’s life except your own. You are not some giant blue dude from Watchmen who can see the future and put yourself in someone else’s thoughts. Just think of how much you could accomplish in your own life if you refocused all of that energy back on yourself. It doesn’t mean you don’t care – it means you learn to appreciate, respect and sometimes love people for who they are. If you don’t respect them, get rid of them and make room in your life for people you respect.

Time: As Seinfeld once asked Elaine – “Are you still the master of your domain?” How many of us can say yes? Your schedule is yours and you’re responsible for what’s on it. If you fill it up with events out of obligation, put your fucking Helium Hand down and stop volunteering for shit. If you’re in too many worthless meetings, either make them count or make the move to get them off your schedule. We all have obligations and responsibilities, goals we want to achieve. But there’s a way to make time for everything you want and need to do: it’s called communicating. The most important aspect of which is communicating with yourself. Everyone’s busy – but you can choose what fills your busy life.

Feeling Overwhelmed: Nine times out of ten, we feel overwhelmed because we’re placing more importance on other people’s expectations than our own. There are a couple of ways to rectify this:

  • Talk to the people in your life about what they expect. (Dialogue. I know, right? The horror.)
  • Ask yourself: how can I be true to those who matter to me while being true to myself?
  • Admit what’s important to you.
  • Lather, rinse, repeat.

Sometimes the answers will make us uncomfortable. Squirmy. Stomach butterflies. Exhilarated. Surprised, even. I’m a firm believer in scaring the shit out of myself every now and then when I realize something’s important. The damnedest thing usually happens: my priorities fall right into line. The result? Some of the best conversations, decisions and journeys of personal fulfillment I’ve ever experienced, shared with the people in my life who matter most. Inclusion versus exclusion.

So, stop it. Right fucking now. Make a list of things you need to stop and I think the craziest thing might happen:

You’re going to end up with a list of things to start doing. And that’s going to be one ass-kicking list.

18 comments
Bryan James
Bryan James

You're simply awesome with words Erika.

corco66
corco66

"Nine times out of ten, we feel overwhelmed because we’re placing more importance on other people’s expectations than our own." Truer words have never been spoken. Thank you for reinforcing a recent revelation of mine...too bad it took me almost thirty years to have that revelation! Better late than never...right? From one redhead to another - many thanks for sharing your brutal honesty and wisdom with the rest of us out here!

corco66
corco66

"Nine times out of ten, we feel overwhelmed because we’re placing more importance on other people’s expectations than our own." Truer words have never been spoken. Thank you for reinforcing a recent revelation of mine...too bad it took me almost thirty years to have that revelation! Better late than never...right? From one redhead to another - many thanks for sharing your brutal honesty and wisdom with the rest of us out here!

Ryan Miller
Ryan Miller

I needed this. Many many thanks, as I've been trying to balance work with, um, work with other work and some personal time. Needed a bitch-slap I guess. Consider the helium hand deflated (for now).

paulbeiser
paulbeiser

Erika,No wiser words have ever been spoken. I think I have read 10+ books around this topic, and you expressed the heart and essence of those books in 1 page :-). thank you."In nature there are neither rewards nor punishments; there are consequences." -Robert Green IngersollP.S. You would enjoy The Monk and The CEO :)

paulbeiser
paulbeiser

Ericka,No wiser words have ever been spoken. I think I have read 10+ books around this topic, and you expressed the heart and essence of those books in 1 page :-). thank you."In nature there are neither rewards nor punishments; there are consequences." -Robert Green IngersollP.S. You would enjoy The Monk and The CEO :)

The Redhead
The Redhead

Thanks for stopping by, Matt. Glad you enjoyed the post. Check back next Monday - the Bitch Slap is a new installment at Redhead Writing! Ass kicking and blunt advice, delivered - every Monday. Thanks for subscribing!

The Redhead
The Redhead

Glad you enjoyed and thanks for stopping by the rantings of The Redhead :)

Matt Dollinger
Matt Dollinger

I love this post - hands down one of the best I've read in a good while. As a coach I deal with this all of the time and often times have to employ my trademarked "shake the baby" technique.I try to do this with my clients. "make a list of what you do every hour of every day for a week - then come back to me with that list" Needless to say they often forget to do their homework.Another part of this is what I call "Shiny Object Syndrome" where folks chase around the latest and greatest, never actually trying to implement something. But that's another post for another day...Consider yourself having gotten a new subscriber today - keep up the good work.

ruthellenkocher
ruthellenkocher

... some serendipitous confirmation. i just gave myself an overhaul of this sort today ... smiles, ruth-e

The Redhead
The Redhead

Perhaps you could mouse over the photo and ask the photographer via his Flickr.com stream :)

Ari Herzog
Ari Herzog

That's an oddly-shaped hand...and is that polygon shape a former "Hello My Name Is" sticker?

The Redhead
The Redhead

Hah! Eileen, anything for you, doll. The low, low price of one meeeeeeeeellion dollas!

leener76
leener76

How much are you charging for a session of more ass kicking advice?? I need you!!!

The Redhead
The Redhead

That's because I'm stalking you :) Thanks for stopping by!

davastewart
davastewart

This looks eerily similar to a note I wrote to myself on Saturday.

The Redhead
The Redhead

Thanks, Bryan - appreciate you stopping by!

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