Friday, July 14, 2006

Defending myself

...I do that a lot, I realized today.
There is an old saying to the effect, that in replying to accusations, your enemies won't listen and your friends won't care. Oh how I wish I could get this through my head!
Several major mistakes on a personal level, recently, have been due to my desire to defend myself.
Now, when I say that I need to stop defending myself, I am not implying that I am left defenseless. Nor am I implying that accusations don't need to ever be answered.
Take, for example, the idea of the pre-emptive strike. We pre-emptively invaded Iraq, before they would have had a chance to develop WMD.
What I am saying is harmful, is what I might call pre-emptive active defense. In other words, you percieve that someone is against you in a particular way. However, you have not been approached directly about it. You pre-emptively move to answer for yourself.
This causes problems for several reasons. First, you may have a mis-perception of the "threat". Secondly, you may lock yourself in certain engagements/arguments that would have never come up anyway. Thirdly, your "pre-emptive active defense" may be very well taken as an offensive move on your part. Fourth, it implies that you are guilty because you believe you have something to worry about. Fifth, it ensures a battle where there might have been none.
Sort of like telling your mother you didn't knock over the cookie jar before she finds out about it. Didn't I learn that lesson already?
Now, I am all for pre-emptive _passive_ defense. In other words, preparing to defend yourself should you be approached, or positioning yourself to avoid accusation. In other words, most times it is best to wait for the confrontation to happen before defending yourself, if you can't avoid the confrontation entirely.
This is a problem for me because I am a worrier. So it is easy for me to pull out my "guns" and deal with something the way it appears to be, without waiting for the "threat" to present and thus define itself.
Even a fool, when he holds his peace, is counted wise.

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

I know how that goes.I have been there before myself.I wish you luck with this.Its hard when you know people are assuming things about you and you just have to wait until they comfront you and not jump the gun.

You said:
"There is an old saying to the effect, that in replying to accusations, your enemies won't listen and your friends won't careThere is an old saying to the effect, that in replying to accusations, your enemies won't listen and your friends won't care. ."

I'm not sure thats all together true. Yes, your ememies will not listen...but I'm sure you have friend that cares! I hope everything works out for you! Stay strong and keep your chin up!

David T. said...

Thanks alot! I guess I mean "friends won't care" in that they'll love you anyway.
I appreciate my friend and care about her too! Hopefully she will stay strong too. I wonder if she is talking to the people at her work about our situation, and the doctrine issues. I think would be interesting what AoG folks have to say. Her mother was AoG, if I remember correctly.