Featured Image courtesy of Time.com
How is it that this conversation seems to be excluding male victims? Why has it become another reason to promote sexism and prejudice?
When did it happen? That the only people who have been victimized and hurt by exploitive and narcissistic people are women? This culture war seems to be getting its marching orders from the very kind of people it is outing.
People with an agenda who most likely are just as guilty as they are victim.
Initially, I thought to avoid this entire topic. Most likely because it is far too close to home. Because, I a self identified heterosexual male have also been victimized. And have also been guilty. I have been on both sides of the battlefront.
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That is why it is probably important to use this conversation to create and establish clear boundaries. If you have ever read anything I have written; than you know that I am a proponent of boundaries. And maintaining them.
I have not always been this way. For most of my adult life, boundaries in relationships were flexible spaces that had plenty of gray in them and lots of room to maneuver. When I set boundaries in my personal and professional experiences, they were set to please me. I created the boundaries and I could change them at will.
It was not until recently that I started to realize that boundaries are not like some demilitarized zone that is negotiated. They are firm lines in the sand. At least for me now. When I set a boundary, it becomes sacrosanct.
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You may wonder how I came to this place. Where I can now discern an appropriate boundary. And keep it without difficulty.
It was a painful road that included plenty of rejection and introspection. Plenty of misunderstandings and loss. Plenty of difficult choices and sacrifice. It was not something that I read about in a book or blog.
Some guru did not come along and enlighten me. I did not take classes or go to school and get a degree to figure this out. I have lived it. And have had to somehow reconcile the failed and lost relationships with my own failings and faults. My own weakness and desires coupled with sorrow and grief have led me to a place where I would rather keep a boundary than breathe. Because I do not want to hurt anymore.
And my relativistic view of boundaries is what has lead me to a lot of hurt. Lots.
Where did it start? At work. My first real job. I worked in a place where I had lots of free time and few people around. I had a coworker. She was interesting and lonely. I guess she was horny and also had a murky handle on appropriate boundaries. She was married too.
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So it began. Sex at work and with a married woman. Bad Choice. Rather then go any further with the story, suffice it to say that it ended badly. I became so afraid of the consequences of our actions that we agreed one day to end it.
I also became so emotionally attached to her, that when we did end it; I was heartbroken. I ended up alone and afraid. And sad. Shortly after that, I also lost my job. And my sense of right and wrong in terms of personal relationships. All the work that had been done in church and at home in terms of parenting went right out the window.
I lost track of what was right and wrong when it comes to having a personal intimate relationship. Did I mention that she was older and had seniority? Does it matter? I was a willing participant because of my own desires and weakness.
From there, it just got worse. I started having sex with anyone that was willing. Just trying to fill a hole in my own heart. Trying to somehow find the moment of comfort and acceptance that I had. It never worked. After numerous lovers, I was still lonely and afraid. I was still missing that one minute of time where I had felt attractive and desired. Where I felt like I was competent and acceptable as a lover.
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Trouble was, I was already bent by that first affair. I was bent towards a predilection for seeking and being with people who already had personal commitments. I did not realize it at the time. But a part of me was thinking that I could somehow get back to that moment by mimicking the first one with similar circumstances.
And that delusion led to a psychosis. That it is somehow possible to have intimacy with another person who is previously committed to someone else. So for years, I kept trying to get back to it. That one moment.
I got back to minutes like that. And even had some long term intimate relationships. But they always ended in disappointment and heartbreak. Every single fricking time. And people getting hurt. Even people who NEVER asked to be hurt, being hurt badly by my problems with intimacy. People who never even got a chance to decide if my bad choices would hurt them.
So was I a victim? Not really. But I became a perpetrator. I was so desperate to get back to that moment in time, that I started preying on people. I started looking for people who were also lonely and horny and had trouble with boundaries. And I found them. Where else? At work of course.
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I recently realized that I was doing this. And have changed it all up. The only way I can figure to do this is to determine what boundaries I will hold myself at. To understand where the boundary is and to keep it with all my heart. No matter what the other person may say they want or need. No matter how easy it may look to get what I want.
Although it seems altruistic, it is really self serving. For whatever the reason, I keep those boundaries. Whether it is because I do not want to be hurt, nor do I want to hurt anyone else. I keep those boundaries.
The irony of it all. Personal and professional boundaries are ridiculously easy to discern and keep. They are created by social conventions and good old common sense. They are pontificated by every “morally correct” person riding their high horse in to solve the problem. You know who you are. The Generals and Colonels of the #metoo movement who have yet to cop to their own failures.
What is the upshot of it all? Decide for yourself to keep the boundaries come hell or high water. And when someone crosses your personal or professional boundaries, call them on it. Do it quick and without mercy. Don’t try to spare their feelings. Don’t try to keep or get that job. Just tell them to their face they are trying to cross your borders and they are not ever, ever getting there.
Image Courtesy of Natalie Whipple
If they back off, great. If they do not, then take it to the next level. Take it to the streets if you need to. Blow the whistle and stand on the rooftops shouting out the truth. If they still do not back off, take them to court. Involve the authorities that are charged with dealing with people who do not understand boundaries.
If you are still afraid or concerned, then let me know. I have ways of discretely persuading people to back off that you will never need to know about or have any personal involvement in. I do not charge for this service either and no one will ever know we spoke of it except Jesus.
Some things I like to do for the pleasure of it. I just enjoy it. But, that is another story for another time.
Cover Image courtesy of https://unsplash.com/@petekp
Have you ever heard someone say, “Cultivate an Attitude of Gratitude?” It is one of those platitudes that bring understanding to the hearer. Because it makes sense. According to author Lewis Howes, “An attitude of gratitude means making it a habit to express thankfulness and appreciation in all parts of your life, on a regular basis, for both the big and small things alike.” As Howes puts it, “If you concentrate on what you have, you’ll always have more. If you concentrate on what you don’t have, you’ll never have enough.”
Naturally, at this time of the year; we start to look at our lives and ourselves and wonder to ourselves how we may improve our lot. Or at least our outlook on our lot in life. Because many people believe that it is not about what we have or what happens to us that defines us as people, it is about how we respond to what happens to us or what we have. What our response is to the world around us and the events that occur in our lives does create us as people. How we respond determines what we do next.
—-Image Courtesy of https://psychlopedia.wikispaces.com/Introspection
And what we do next determines if we gain any positive change or if we make things worse. I have seen this effect in my own life. I have had setbacks and disappointments. Failures and fallings. I have seen some troubles. And caused some trouble. In retrospect, I see that when I responded with gratitude even though I failed to understand my circumstances or the reasons for them; that I was given some clarity on what to do next. And peace over what I am experiencing. And understanding of how to avoid the same thing happening again.
That may be the most valuable thing that comes from being thankful. Sufficient understanding to avoid making the same mistakes over and over again. As George Santayana wrote so eloquently in “The Life of Reason”; Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it. Although I am not certain that anyone has ever said this, I am fairly certain that those who do not understand their past mistakes are going to make them again. And again. And again.
Where does gratitude place us then? Does it bring supernatural humanity to our difficult and challenging lives? Does it somehow bring Aunt Martha back to life? Or get you your job back? Or bring your spouse back? No. It really will not. Most times the tragedies and problems that we all face on this earth will not be reversed miraculously by being thankful for them. In fact, being thankful when your child takes ill or flunks out of school, or when you wife cheats on you or when you write a completely off the wall report that gets you fired seems counterintuitive doesn’t it?
Is it even possible to give thanks when you get the news you have cancer? Or when you find out that your best friend is moving away? Or your mom was just killed in an auto accident? Or if you find someone stole your identity and all the work you have done to bring prosperity into your life has been dashed causing you to become behind in all your bills and on the verge of foreclosure?
The answer is yes. It is possible to give thanks in tragedy and loss. When you disappoint yourself and those around you. When things start going badly and you have no control over it. It is possible.
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If you take comfort in the Holy Scriptures, and take the time to read them; you will see that people did give thanks. Even when God told them to do unthinkable things. Consider Abraham. He was commanded to sacrifice his own son whom he loved deeply. And he fully intended to obey God. He took his precious child to the place God commanded. He started the fire. He had the knife to his son’s throat. And God interrupted Abraham’s plan to obey. A burnt offering was provided and Isaac was spared.
If you look closely at this story in the Holy Scripture, you see that Abraham worshiped God despite what he was told to do. Within worship there is gratitude. Deep heartfelt and genuine gratitude. And although in this story, a miracle did occur; it was Abraham’s attitude that got him through this incredible test. His attitude was that God would provide. And God did.
So it may be that having an attitude of gratitude actually lifts a person above their circumstances. Creates an altitude of gratitude. Above the pain and disappointment. Above the grief and fear. Above the temporal things that sometimes seem so out of whack and confusing. Above the world and its schemes and petty concerns. Above it all.
Today, when you are giving thanks consider Him who has given us all things to enjoy. And who constantly seeks to bring us into fellowship and worship. Give thanks to Him who is Worthy. And rise above it all where there is order and love and peace. Give thanks to God Most High, for He is good. For His Mercy endures forever.
First off, understand that this post is not written to be grammatically or politically correct. It is written in a style of writing called “stream of consciousness”
That means that if you have some problem with how I have represented my thoughts on this election coming up, you are being judgmental. Who are you to judge my stream of consciousness?
If you have some ideas or opinions about the upcoming elections, please by all means share your thoughts or opinions.
We gots an election coming up in this piece. Mahoning Valley Votes yall. So’’s I decided I needs to weigh in on some stuff…
I gots my facts from two sources:
The League of Women Voters puts out this fine guide to the elections by county and I found me a copy and read up on it. I aint ginna bother speaking to no stuff that I aint voting for so ifin you is smart, you will get your own copy somewhere.
I gots mine at St E’s whiles I was visiting a friend who had himself all jacked up. But I am guessing if you call them, they can tell you where you can get yours. They is called the League of Women Voters. Ask your google or your siri or your mama, cause I aint your directory assistance— you know.
If you dont want to ask you mama or try to calls them get on over to ballotpedia.org I guess you wants me spell it for ya. Ballotpedia.org dang its. Sound it out if you gots to. Sheeeetttt…
If there is one thing you can do smart in this world it is get your arse out theres and vote. But don’t be a ponkass bitch about it. Find out whats you votin on first. Or if you is kinda preferrin to be a follower then just vote how I is going to vote.
There are two statewide issues on the ballot. One I knows everyone has been hearing about is Issue 2. We done heard so much about issue 2, most of us is thinking the whole thing is just number two. And it is too. We gots a bunch of lying pharmaceutical companies who is masquerading as people who gives a shit about anything other than money whos is buying all kinds of support from doctors and lawyers and indian chiefs tryin to look legit. They are against Issue 2 Passing. They created some special Political Action Committee and funded it real nice and then started trying to tell everyone that if Issue 2 Passes it is going to cause all kinds of problems and cost people more money.
That shizzit is outright lies. The only people gonna lose money is the people selling you your drugs. They try to make out that if it passes that the people who sponsored it are going to get all their legal bills paid. Well, that is misdirection. The fact is that the only legal bills that would get paid by the taxpayers are the ones that are created when the the pharma companies sue them for sponsoring the bill in the first place. I will be voting for Issue two to pass. Just cause in my view these pharma companies are not only fat and rich as it is and lying dirtballs. They also is partially responsible for the opioid problem in this state and every other place. So fuck them. They dont get no cred from me.
Second Statewide is Marsy’s Law also known as Issue 1. This is one that everyone should be voting to pass. Essentially it is will give the victims of crimes some rights that they currently don’t have. Like being advised as to the status of a case against a perp who may have done something to them. And other helpful stuff. Crime Victims Rights are something that most states already have in place and Ohio needs to get with the times on this. So it is a yes from me.
I lives in Mahoning County. There are some renewals on levies that should pass. And to be sure, in my opinion unless you lives somewhere seriously corrupt like Niles or The City of Youngstown, most times when your trustees or whoever is asking for money to do something, it is cause they need it. And it will benefit your community. So I usually just go carte blanche on all that cause I live in Boardman and aint never really had no problem with how we been governed here. Or how much it costs. OR any of that shit.
We gots some people running for School Board here and trustee too here in Boardman. A nice place to call home. We gots three homies runnin for trustee. I aint quite sure what a trustee is but I am guessing that they must do something otherwise, why would we have to elect em?
So we gots Brad Calhoun– This dude is like in his fifties. I guess he has already been a trustee for 8 years up in here. So he gots some experience. And that is helpful I am thinking. SO he is probably gonna get my vote. Just cause like I said before, I aint got no real complaints about how shit goes here.
Then we gots some educational peoples looking to get elected. Mahoning County has an Educational Service Center. Funny thing is I aint never heard of this shit. But if you want to know what they do, Check this link. https://www.mahoningesc.org/Page/338
One of them homies lookin to get elected is an incumbent. That means he is already working there. His name is Scarsella. I guess he has been there since 2006. That means he gots experience and plenty of it. Odd thing is I cant figure no reason to make a change there. I guess cause I aint never heard of it and had to look it up it dont matter all that much to me. But it may matter to you. If you think someone else can do a better job, then vote em in. It aint my place to tell you how to live.
Then is Boardman we gots people wantin to be on the School Board. Again, it dont matter much to me., so I is probably just going to vote for the people who are already working there. Vickie Davis and John Landers. I need to pick another out of the four runnin so last but not least, Tracey Balentine. Why not Fryda? You may ask. Cause he aint got no experience with the schools that I can see. He is some business guy. That may be good in some circles. But, many times business people have ulterior motives when they is trying to get elected. Shoot just look at Trump ifin you dont believe that.
Like I said earlier, for the Tax levies, I figure to give em all a yes. We also gots some schools asking for money. I say yes again. Aint no harm in investing in the youngins. And then finally we gots some restaurants here in Boardman wantin to sell some hooch on Sunday and whatnot. Who cares really? May as well let em sell it here. Cause if people wants to drink on Sunday, they is gonna get their dranks. May as well be here at the local places.
So that is all for this election cycle. This is DM signing off for now. But if you gets on my nerves enough, I will definitely have something to say about it. And you.
Featured image courtesy of Steve Lovelace
Email is Content too. And if you have a list, then you want people to interact with your emails don’t you. You want people to open your emails. To take action. And if they don’t, you may want to look at your content. Your Subject Line. Your angle.
I am not going to go off too much on this.
But who does not hate when you get email that causes you to have to visit the website because it is deceptive?
I suppose I expect more from EBay. They were one of the first ecommerce platforms. And I would expect that they can do way better than this. Believe me when I tell you that it is really challenging to get people to respond to email these days.
You know this. Because if you are anything like me; you get a lot of email. If you think that competing on Social Media is tough, or SEO is competitive; then you never really thought how much of a challenge it is to get people to even open your email.
Let alone act on it.
What is my point? Today, I got this from EBay. And I think it is the one of the most obnoxious emails I have ever received.
Why am I so miffed with this? And why am I posting about it?
This is a complete lie. Outright Deception. I did not buy anything from EBay recently. So, of course; I had to visit their website to make sure that my account had not been hijacked or hacked.
Of course, we all want people to interact with our content. To do something when we reach out. But, in my opinion this is completely the wrong way to go about it. Don’t lie to people. Ever.
Not if you value your reputation on line anyway.
Or you care about your audience’s feelings. Or about them in any way.
Here is some more Facebook Content Analysis to give you an idea of what you could expect from my Newsletter “Content”inental Breakfast when you sign up. Please join me.
Let’s dive in a little.
Here we have a very popular Facebook Page entitled The Future is Now. https://www.facebook.com/thefutureisnowbymic
As of this writing, according to Facebook; 705 Thousand people follow this page.
Let’s look at the numbers.
First, of all those followers; only 205 Shared this post. 362 people reacted to it (liked or otherwise) and a measly 29 people commented on it.
So what do you think? Are these good numbers?
Based on the current Facebook Algorithms, it is neither good nor bad really. It just is. This is the kind of Organic Reach you can expect if you create a High Quality Video and have over 700,000 Followers.
All the components of a good video are there. Good editing, good writing, good sound, solid textual enhancement. And yet, not much reach really.
Why am I pointing this all out?
Because this video may have cost as much as $3000 to produce (I am guessing on the production budget) and yet it really did not do much.
Why is that do you think?
The topic or subject? The timing? Or is there something else going on here on this page that may have caused the reach to be slight, despite the time and effort it took to create this content?