Too many people attempt to bury their imperfections, disappointments, vexing past, professional and academic inadequacies, physical shortcomings, mental imbalances, low self-esteem, failures, utter unhappiness, and all of the other things unpleasing to them. Those aforementioned things are what I call “funk.” All human beings are funky because no one is perfect. We all, therefore, are funky because of our inability to be perfect. People have to face the reality that their funk will always be present—there’s no escaping it. What can I do about my funk? You should never try to mask, hide, replicate, and ignore your funk. A significant number of individuals fail to understand their funk is valuable.
When you never deal frankly, boldly, critically, and thoroughly with the things about yourself and your life that are unpleasing to you, then you’re not only missing a meaningful opportunity to capitalize on the value of those unpleasing phenomena, but also you’re preventing yourself from being truly whole and liberated. You cannot truly be a whole and liberated person when you’re carrying life’s funk with you that you refuse to deal with in such a serious way that your funk is no longer a liability but now an asset. More people are going to have to deal with their low self-esteem or the problems with their self-esteem. Self-esteem problems are at the root cause of many of the important problems people experience in America.
People who are overly sensitive about the most infinitesimal phenomena reveal the disadvantages of living a life without an appreciation of the funk. Their self-esteem quandaries cause them to see their funk in only a negative light. Many people are constantly trying to hide from who they really are because of the fear they have of what people in their environment will say about them if they elect to be themselves. You will never prosper when you run away from who you really are. Moreover, you will never know who you really are when you never give yourself a chance to be real with yourself.
People know you’re phony when you always attempt to present yourself as perfect—like there is nothing in your past and present that doesn’t stink.
Funk stinks—face it!
Too many people are overly focused on doing and saying the things pleasing to those around them. They neglect the precious time each day presents to move closer to understanding themselves more and to engage in the critical self-examination necessary to becoming the best human beings they can be. When people are doing better than you, don’t let envy and jealousy consume you. The time you’re investing in being envious and jealous can serve you better if you devote it to working on your own progression. When you’re concentrated on your own progression, you will not have time to hate on others. You might find that you will become a happier person when you’re happy for other people doing well.
For the things negative things in your life that you’re responsible for, it’s time for you to own those things. When you try to transfer your funk over to other people, it’s still your funk, although an attempt to transfer your funk may result in others having to share the burden on your funk. Please, therefore, don’t make efforts place the encumbrance of your funk on others. If you’re miserable, don’t go around attempting to make others miserable. You’re miserable because you want to be miserable. If you’re miserable, don’t deny it—do something about it! Recognize that who you really are is someone special. However, if you don’t know who you really are, or have intentionally made yourself a fusion of multiple personalities to appease society (and your family and friends), you’re not special. In order to be special, you have to be willing to be yourself.
What’s wrong with being yourself? Nothing!
Muster the courage to handle your funk and you will live a better, freer, and happier life.
Antonio Maurice Daniels
University of Wisconsin-Madison
One thing you need to make sure you always evaluate throughout each day is your attitude. Always make an effort to not let your attitude dominate you—you should dominate it. After all, it’s your attitude. When you commit yourself to having a positive attitude, this will help you to avoid experiencing so many “bad days” and “bad moods.” You can resolve within yourself that you’re not going to allow your attitude to cause people to look unfavorably on you. Of course, people are going to judge you regardless of the type of attitude you have, but you have to admit that a repulsive attitude is certainly going to trigger pejorative critiques of you.
When you’re not the master of your attitude, this can affect your decision making. If you have a negative attitude, this can result in you making decisions that can generate undesired outcomes. For example, when you give the things you’re going through the power to control your attitude, and then your negative attitude results in you treating those who really love you wrong, your unappealing attitude can cause those individuals to steer away from you because of their fear of being hurt again. Now, imagine how differently those who don’t really love you will respond to your unflattering attitude.
Mastering your attitude is a matter of self-control. You have to be in control of yourself in order to be in control of your attitude. When you find it challenging to control your attitude, then this reality should inform you that you have a number of things in your life that have spiraled out of control. You must immediately work to gain control of those things. It may not be best to try to work on getting the problematic things together in your life that are impacting your attitude alone. You may want to seek professional counseling and/or the support of those who really love you.
If there are things from your past that continue to keep you from having a good attitude, then you need to seek professional counseling and/or support from those who love you to defeat those things in your past deleterious to your attitude. It certainly will not hurt for you to ameliorate your spiritual life by beginning a personal relationship with God or becoming more dedicated to your extant personal relationship with God.
Your attitude reflects your character. If you have poor character, you’re going to have a poor attitude. For those with good character, the type of attitude you have can reveal some things you need to work on that could cause people to perceive you as not having good character.
Keeping our attitude in check should become one of our fundamental priorities each day.
When a person has been supporting and doing things for you for years, don’t let your damaging attitude communicate to him or her that you’re ungrateful for the things he or she has done.
A poor attitude can develop from immaturity. If you’re struggling with a poor attitude, therefore, it may be a sign that you need to devote more effort to maturing. You’re not always going to get your way—true adults understand this reality.
The reason why it’s vital for all us to check our attitude throughout each day is conditions and people may influence us to develop an unbecoming attitude, even for a short period of time. We have to, therefore, be ready to exercise full control over our attitude, especially when anger-inducing people and circumstances emerge.
Have you checked your attitude today?
Antonio Maurice Daniels
University of Wisconsin-Madison
Don’t let fear of being terminated from your job result in you surrendering your principles. Some people are willing to capitulate who they are just to keep their paycheck. While it’s a reality that you need a paycheck to survive, there are other employers who can supply you with a paycheck than the employer who currently does. I have witnessed too many individuals who will do the wrong things just to be viewed as doing the right things in eyes of their supervisors. While there is certainly nothing wrong with treating your supervisor with respect, he or she is not your master.
Too many people are allowing themselves to be enslaved by their supervisors. When one relies too heavily upon capitalist ideology without engaging in critical thinking, the individual will begin to view himself or herself as being powerless at his or her place of employment. The individual will feel that what one’s supervisor says must be done—no matter how wrong it is.
If your supervisor is mistreating you and/or requiring you to do something that the law safeguards you from, you don’t have to accept what your supervisor is doing to you. The law is on your side against reckless supervisors who abuse their power.
Stop running around kissing your supervisor’s butt!
When you let someone take advantage of you all of the time, he or she will continue to take advantage of you. It’s up to you to break this cycle. People think that when they run around and kiss their supervisor’s butt their supervisor is going to appreciate them more—that’s foolishness! Wake up! If you’ve been doing great work for a long time and your supervisor does not already appreciate you, what makes you think kissing his or her butt is going to make him or her appreciate you?
What you say matters. Therefore, stop calling your supervisor “boss.” Your supervisor is not your ruler—he or she just gives you a paycheck. You’re a liberated American who does not have to dance to the tune of your supervisor. When they made one job, they made another one. When they made one paycheck, they made another one. Remember this the next time you find yourself acting all fake around your supervisor.
When you don’t like something that your supervisor says or does, then let him or her know it. Too many people just fuss about their mistreatment at their jobs at their kitchen tables, but they are unwilling to make the public aware of the injustices that take place in the workplace. What you say at your kitchen table is not going to matter if it’s not concatenated with meaningful action.
Be willing to give up your supervisor and not your principles. Principles matter! If you will allow your supervisor to say and do anything just to keep a paycheck, then you’re making it easy for your employer to exploit you. People who are principled individuals will not willingly accept exploitation. They vehemently fight exploitation, especially from those who are in positions of power.
Your values and beliefs that define you are more important than the paycheck you’re currently receiving. You can get another job. You didn’t have a job before you got your current one. While I can understand for those of you who live from paycheck to paycheck can believe that receiving your paycheck is a matter of survival, I encourage you to look for potential employment elsewhere and consider ways you can advance yourself, including furthering your education, to significantly diminish your worries about losing your current job.
Don’t be a prostitute for your employer!
If your supervisor extends a contract to you that has a stipulation in it that tramples your constitutional rights, don’t be a fool and accept that contract as is. If you’re going to accept the contract, indicate that your signature does not represent a relinquishing of any safeguards guaranteed by the Constitution. Your life is more valuable than any paycheck.
Of course, I’m not advocating for you to be a reckless person at your job who is rude to everyone for no reason. However, when your supervisor is not being fair to you, don’t accept this inequity just to keep your paycheck coming in without any problems. When your supervisor feels like he or she can do anything to you, your paycheck is not safe in the first place. Therefore, you need to be proactive to not only protect your paycheck but also to protect your principles.
Antonio Maurice Daniels
University of Wisconsin-Madison