I was at a friends marriage today. The ceremony went smoothly amidst the heavy rain pouring outside. This forced the entire service to be held inside a big tent complex.
Naturally, conversations flowed like fine wine after a busy day at work. I don’t get to see my old friends that often anymore. It was foreseeable back in high school when we started choosing careers and it is even more flagrant now. We are slowly drifting away as we compound decision upon decision that forges our life paths.
I preferred not to contemplate this aspect of life because I wanted to maximize my attention during our reunion. So let’s leave this subject for another article.
We talked about everything and nothing. I was a bit irked by the way we talked about he and she, this guy and that girl, that couple, that group… It’s so easy to point fingers or to talk about other individuals.
I did my best to avoid criticism and judgment, but it could be compared to spending time outside trying not to breath in too much air. It was inevitable and so I mixed in eventually. The more we resist a temptation, the stronger it might lash back at us.
Thankfully I did not take myself too seriously in this experience, but it is important to note how easily influenced we are in a group setting by the big themes flowing around. That’s why a team that has drive and a vision full of possibilities is so good to work with. Everyone reinforces those feelings naturally, the same way we do when we are confronted with other social settings. It’s something were very good at. The same way someone acts differently alone as apposed to in a group.
What shook me up though, is how difficult it was to hold on to principles and higher forces. I cultivate this feeling daily, because I think that we stand no chance during the real thing if we lack practice in that department. This reminds me of Mike Tyson’s quote :
Everyone has a plan ‘till they get punched in the mouth.
Which might sound simple, but it bears truth. To practice every situation in a controlled environment and to look honestly at the results is probably the only sensible way to acquire character traits that will resist external social pressures that naturally flow over us. The pressure will hit you in the fact and without proper preparation it will be quite difficult to stay authentic.