There is an expression, “It is easier to STAY out of trouble than to GET out of trouble.”

Your thoughts and your wise words of wisdom on this topic, please.

3 responses to “Trouble!

  1. I am not too sure about this topic but I will give it a shot. What many people view as trouble to me is just another way to accomplish a task, create a new challenge, see who you honestly are from the heart. To me just the word trouble can bring up causes of fear in the mind and to some may cause them to become depressed however,I see things so much differently and that is probably just because I have been through so much in my life that what may seem to others as trouble to me it is just another way for me to show what I am made of. I like adventure and learning new ways of learning how to manage life and learn and thrive from it. If you want to visit my website I have just finished my memoir and am in the process of getting it published. Go to there you will see an email address if you have any comments however the new email address is hope to hear from you!

  2. On trouble, radar and comedy clips

    Trouble? Hmm, it’s a difficult one, because life is a journey where sometimes we have to fall flat on our faces just to keep our feet on the ground. I suppose the wisdom is, like a good general, to select your battleground. Trouble, if it must come, is an adversary best dealt with on your terms.

    I’ll tell you a story to give a location. Once when I was very young I found myself holding a knife, facing an adversary holding a meat cleaver. The adrenalin was pumping and neither of us were about to back down. At that point I realised I was in trouble, way over my head in trouble.

    Let’s consider trouble, let’s dissect it and see what of it is inevitable and what is avoidable. Because it’s true, the best kind of trouble is the trouble you can avoid. You’ve seen those comedy clip shows where someone’s caught on camera walking into a lamp post or making a spectacle of themselves which is great quick fix TV because everything is there, the context, the setting, the action, the outcome and the payoff. Comedy gold or laughter heaven. And then the painful realization that yes, it’s real life, it’s not a movie, it’s not contrived but this stuff actually happens.

    And what’s the common denominator in all these clips? It’s that you the viewer sees the action unfold while the unwitting victim is oblivious to what’s going on. So the key here is awareness, you are given the third person perspective or omniscience that the camera allows and you see the scenario unfold, the players, the action and the outcome. The last person to know it is the victim or the protagonist. Trouble is like that too, the last person to know that they are heading for trouble is often the one who will suffer the most because of it. They are the one who does not see the eventual outcome of whatever course they are on.

    Trouble, which has its origin in the Latin word turbulentus, refers to the state of being inconvenienced or encountering adversity. By knowing it in advance it can be avoided. Awareness leads to avoidance. Awareness comes from perception or seeing what is ahead, seeing what lies ahead requires intelligence, intelligence in the sense of being aware of one’s situation. Avoidance requires wit and acuity, an ability to be versatile and correct one’s course in mid stream. Navigating a stretch of one’s life where there is turbulence necessitates skill, help, guidance and the right kind of attitude. Perhaps also there is the need for an acute sense of self preservation, listening to that voice inside that tells us to pull back, to apply the internal brakes.

    Shifting the perspective of the viewer to the participant, and in this context the participant is you and the scenario is your life. The way to avoid trouble is by seeing the slapstick or comedic scenario unfold before becoming its hapless victim. In everything there is a beginning, a middle and an end, in comedy clips there is the set up, the action and the payoff, in life there is the same principle at play. So at the beginning, in the set up, have awareness, look around you, what could possibly go wrong? What does that banana skin on the sidewalk suggest, what do that girl on the roller skates and those two men carrying the huge plate of glass have to do with each other? Try to see that once activated it becomes part of who and what you are. Can you imagine a ship putting to sea without radar to detect other ships or potential hazards? Before WW2 no ships ever put to see with radar, it didn’t exist, things like fog were nightmare scenarios and trouble without awareness is like barrelling along at top speed in the fog, the outcome is inevitable.

    Have the awareness that all life is a sequence, all events are the antecedent of those events that follow, nothing is isolated and we live in a joined up universe. What you do today affects your tomorrow, what you think today affects your thoughts tomorrow and if you are on a rocky, pot holed and uneven path chances are you know it but you are looking elsewhere and missing the obvious. Which is why people around you get exasperated, because they are watching the comedy clip of your life and trying to help, they’re trying to point out to you their third person omniscience.

    One of the things I do is work with kids who have severe emotional and behavioural difficulties. They each have a unique profile but they are mostly all in trouble of one form or another. They don’t see it, they see other people as the problem, they don’t usually see anything to be their fault and they have great difficulty taking responsibility for their own actions, preferring the easier option of adopting the victim role. What seems to be common to all of them is the inability to apply that inner braking system so that at the point of no return they go that little bit further instead of pulling back. It’s reckless, irresponsible and lacking in perception, the extreme manifestation of what most people are not dealing with that gets them into trouble. Hindsight is a wonderful thing but it has no teeth, far better to develop foresight and see the storm clouds on the horizon before realizing you’ve got no umbrella or raincoat as the heavens open. I’m sure I’ve seen a clip of Charlie Chaplin somewhere putting up an umbrella without a canopy just the ribs, of course he got soaked, how we laughed!

    The knife and the meat cleaver? Fortunately other people saw where this clip was going and stepped in before the situation escalated. Listen to the voice of reason, even if sometimes it’s not your own.

  3. I have another blog which talks about why I collect lap blankets and stuffed animals for Seniors and Vets.

    The post below is where I learned about staying out of trouble.

    A 19 year – old addicted to drugs and alcohol needed a baby blanket

    Sometimes, when you are just out for a cup of coffee in a restaurant, you meet someone who needs a blanket for comfort and security.

    Patrick was so handsome, clean cut and nice….and facing a trial for an accident he was involved in while intoxicated. I am not making excuses for a 19 year-old young man that has lots of driving points and 3 DUI’s but somehow you have to wonder what happened over the years that made him mask his pain with so many substances.

    A stay in a psychiatric facility when he was in high school, being sent to Utah for an alternative high school experience, suffering with bi-polar disease, but so young and trying to find himself.

    “Do you work,” I asked.

    “I used to work at a pizza shop,” he responded.

    I tried to encourage him. “I believe in you. Patrick. God has something mighty planned for you.”

    I remember when a lady in church said that to me at a low point in my life. I held on to that sentence of hope for many years.

    “I will always pray for you, Patrick. When are you going to trial?”

    “February 28th. I have a public defender.”

    My mothering mode went into action.

    1.Wear a nice suit. Call the judge ‘ Your Honor.”
    2.Look everybody in the eye when you speak.
    3.Say how sorry you are and show remorse for your actions.
    4.Apologize to the lady who was severely hurt by your actions.
    5.Tell them you are in a 12 – Step Program and you have a sponsor.
    6.Tell them you are turning your life around.
    I handed him a baby blanket, then decided to show him a pile so he could select the best one. He took the softest velour baby blue blanket. It had a Winnie the Pooh label on the left corner. It was so fresh and beautiful. It looked like it had never been used.

    “Everybody needs a blanket to hold on to, Patrick.”

    He smiled a little boy grin and hugged me. “Maam, do you have any kids?”

    “Yes, I have four in their 20’s.”

    “Would you tell them something for me?” Patrick asked.

    “Tell them it is easier to STAY OUT of trouble than to GET OUT of trouble. I shouldn’t have been drinking and putting other chemicals in my body while I was taking depression medication. It just got me all screwed up. I am paying for it BIG-TIME now. My counselor used to tell me that every decision has a price. I am paying a big price for my poor choices now. I am looking at jail time.”

    Originally, I thought the blankets were for Vets and Seniors in nursing homes. Sometimes, they are for young men, living in a group home in Chester County. Thank you to everybody who is collecting them!

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