I am Choosing…ME for a Change

20140525_183315This holiday season I am giving the gift of me to: ME. It is about time I start to be good to me. I know, reads like a cliche’ and a bullshit self-help mantra. Yet, I need to do this. That ain’t selfish is it? No. It’s self-care. Yeah, self-care. I like that cognitive reframe. Works for me.

The fine line between self-care and selfishness is razor thin and crooked line. That “fine line” is vague. Conceptual. Hard to locate and different for each and every one of us. So often in the worlds of psychology, theology or self-help a balancing act of a fine line is the difference between healthy and unhealthy; effective and ineffective, real life and pathological. That balancing act of self-care and selfishness is a tightrope walk above a pit of gators.

For me, and perhaps you as well, traversing that tightrope between self-care and selfishness is a constant battle. I love doing for others; yet, I do for others so that they do for me. It’s a give to get model of reciprocating love and affections. And when I, as the grand mind-master, Geppetto, do not receive the return on my giving investment I have expected, I become selfish, arrogant, rude, and a jerk.

Sometimes I don’t put a stake in the ground, make decisions, or take the responsibility of meeting my own needs because I see that as selfish not self-care. It is neither. It is pure, unadulterated fear. I fear hurting or scaring others by doing what I want or falling short of my goal so I fail to take action and look to others to make my decisions for me. When people go not comply with my secret and uncommunicated wishes, I can become selfish. Rude. Insulting. And a Jerk. It is even worse when people make the wrong decision for me.

Either way, I need to man up, put up or shut up. I need to do for ME. I can do for others when that benefits ME and I don’t need the other to meet my needs.

This psychology stuff is complicated and confusing.

Keeping it simple, if I take responsibility for meeting my own needs, making my own decisions, communicating my thoughts and emotions and taking responsibility for my own choices and behaviors then all should be good with the world. Simpler.

Yet difficult to pull off.

I hope I can.

Why Do I Say I Won’t Do What I Know I Will Do

1122112031My wife and I play this game and do this dance. For our entire marriage we have danced this dance and always played this game.

She, knowing the kind of husband that I am, assumes that I will do various things for her. She is right. I do thing for her. I do. Really.

I, hating to be predictable or worse yet taken for granted, complain and say that I am not going to do what she assumes I will eventually do knowing full well that I will eventually do what it is she assumes and knows I do.

My ranting and raving leads to my wife becoming annoyed and the dance takes a twist and turn. A fun twist. She gets are fiery and I get all puffed up. I know, sadistic fun. I can’t resist.

Eventually all returns to normal and I, being the husband that and I am and the one my wife knows me to be, do what it is I was always going to do and my wife knew that I would do.

What the…

Fun and Freedom: Two Holiday Gifts

20141207_114236I am a guy who lives to have fun and requires the freedom to pursue that fun. Oh, is that all.

Simple right?

No. Complex.

Fun, that is easy to make happen. Mostly. In many ways, my own ability to have fun, enjoy what life has to offer, play and learn is within my control and capabilities. Even while stranded at an airport awaiting a flight I can learn, play and have mucho funo.

Freedom. A touch more difficult than the fun element. Requires ca$h and a good deal of luck. Mucho of the freedomo is out of my controlo which of course is where the fit hits the shan in my life and then the world turns to shit.

If the worlds were to align, perfectly, I would be able to make enough cash to support a nice life style for my family through the authoring of this blog and books, the production of my podcast and videos and my performances for live audiences.

Yeah baby!

Plenty of FUN. Questions is, autonomy-a fancy word for freedom? If I have a writing deadline, a podcast deadline, video production deadline or travel required to a live performance, workshop or keynote address, am I afforded the autonomy and freedom to have fun? If I am Bob Zima, the brand, and Bob Zima, the person, is there, will there be, can there ever be, enough time for me to just fuck around and have fun for the sake of play?

God I hope so.

Otherwise, all of what I am doing now will be a colossal waste of time.

Living with Reckless Abandon

wpid-img_20140526_103910.jpgI have been to Hell and back.

  • Overcame drug and alcohol addiction.
  • Been homeless. With two young children and a hit sexy wife.
  • Filed bankruptcy.
  • Buried two children.

Yep. I have lived Hollywood’s worst plot lines. Lived them.

So, why the fuck am I thrown into panic disorder or PTSD-I can’t differentiate my own self-diagnosis-by a leaky shower faucet, a squeaky 18 year old truck, and host of other benign and bullshit of life annoyances?

I have spit in the Devil’s face and said, “fuck you, I will survive!”

I walked away from a Hell on earth.

I healed, became sober, survived and persevered in light of legendary adversity. Yet bullshit, mundane annoyances fuck me up. WHY?

One would think that with my life story, nothing would ever phase me. I would be a real iron man, impenetrable by stress and protected by a armor forged through years of trials and tribulations.

Fuck no.

I am weak.

I am susceptible to anxiety.

Why do I experience fear?

What more could happen to me?

Are there any more lessons yet to learn?

So the faucet leaks. What’s the worse that can happen? Higher water bill, flooded basement, flooded septic field? How is that worse than putting your child’s casket into the ground? How is that worse than driving away from the home you can no longer afford?

So the car squeaks? What’s the worse that can happen? A breakdown? New car? Week off of work so that you can locate a new car? How is that remotely close to the time and effort put into gaining sobriety? How is that nearly as high a mountain to climb as moving out of your in-laws house and into your new rental that you can actually afford?

Fuck. I have been there and done that. There is truly very little that can happen to me that I can not survive.

Only problem is…I don’t believe that line of bullshit.

At least, not today.

There is always tomorrow.