There is after all no obligation to answer every passing fool according to his folly. —Elias Canetti—
Often we behave as though were in other people’s power—as though we were bound to act in certain ways because others expected it from us without their
even asking, or our ever checking.
Perhaps we have a deep need to please the authority figures in our lives because we fear we’re not worth much. Let’s say, further, that our boss stays late in the office every night. We may feel as compelled to stay as late as, or as longer than, the boss, out of some wish to prove our loyalty and productivity.
Most of us realize that a challenge doesn’t mean we have to fight; an invitation doesn’t mean we have to accept. But sometimes, especially when it hits an sensitive or insecure area, we find ourselves blindly reacting to someone else’s unreasonable actions. We feel sucked in, manipulated, powerless.
We can depend on our own power when we trust in our innate values as humans, and we will make decisions that leave us comfortable with ourselves.
I will remember to guard myself against irrational compliance.