Recently, in one of my classes, I made a joke about my crazy family. My students laughed and then began shouting out things about their families that were “crazy.” I laughed right along with them for a minute, but, after a few of the experiences shared were a bit too unfortunate, I used my teacher voice and shut down the conversation. “We are all crazy. It’s not a competition.”
Goodness knows my family and I suffer from some pretty cool idiosyncrasies but we are no different than the clan down the road. Yes, we might require dumplings (that are rolled so thin, they really should be called noodles) at EVERY family function. True, we might all suffer from a bit of OCD about things like who has to sit at the kids’ table. We have our share of skeletons in the closet, but the skeletons remain because some of us are too attached to our grudges. (Seriously, guys, let them go!) In all honesty, we are wonderfully loving and crazy in our own right.
The same goes for you and your family. Sometimes family isn’t made up of blood-relatives. Sometimes our families are those we surround ourselves with day in and day out. “Family” consists of those who make you feel loved, safe, and comfortable. They are the ones you know will love you even if you are crazy.
Just because you are loved in spite of your crazy, does not mean you have to test the limits of insanity in your relationships.
When you feel yourself doing or saying things that are not of the norm or that are unacceptable, stop. Breathe, Think about the repercussions of your decisions. Even though they love you, does your family deserve to put up with your “crazy”?
Sometimes people will say, “They expect me to do stupid stuff.”
Well, that’s all good and well but what if you didn’t live up to those expectations?
What if you surpassed them by making smart choices and being a productive member of your family?
It might be funny to drink too much or say outlandish things, but the funny wears off real quick and the negative reputation and damage done by your actions can last a LONG time.
Weddings and holidays tend to bring out a special kind of crazy. Try to include making responsible choices as part of your gift to your family and those you care about.
Here is an Intentergy challenge for all of us. Give up competing in the crazy race. We are all “crazy” in our own ways and it is far better to celebrate our differences than it is to revel in the insanity of poor choices. Be good to yourself and those you love. Let your actions be done in good humor, light-heartedness, and kindness.
By: Melanie A. Peters
P.S. I have witnessed some acts of insanity that probably deserved a trophy for their craziness, but fortunately there really wasn’t a trophy for stupidity at any of those occasions. They usually won a doctor bill or lawyer fees as their Certificate of Achievement.