Wednesday, April 23rd, 2014

HOW VICTORIAN OF ME!

I know the seven deadly sins.
Are there seven lively virtues?

Anyway I have been thinking of a good old-fashioned virtue so I share it to get it out of my head and onto paper.

FORBEARANCE.  Now I did not have a huge family gathering for Easter, so this is not a reaction to my family reality.  Not that it couldn’t be, but it isn’t.

I live with a family of certified coaches (which can make all of us certified nuts) and therapists so we are pretty darned good at blunt and very good at expressing love and appreciation.  And we are a combined family so we are also good at knowing when to shut up.  We talk about the amount of adaptation skills it takes to combine five kids into a family just because the parents want to be together. We have ended up with five wonderful adult children–meaning I’d be glad to go on an extended vacation with any one of them.  Pretty good, no?

Forbearance means both tolerance and restraint.  Name a modern issue and see what tolerance and restraint could do to address it.
Middle East?
Putin?
Congress?
Race?
Family tension?

Forbearance takes a strong ego and a managed ego.
It takes knowing when to give and when to take.
It demands knowing how much blunt truth is needed and when.
It knows that blunt truth always does some damage and takes time and trust to repair.
Forbearance knows that it takes a strong self to be able to hold back when needed.

Here’s the catch.  Forbearance has to be a shared value, a community behavior or it can be self-victimizing and/or simply promote lying.  So sometimes it has to be taught or named with some blunt truth.  

I think Forbearance could make the world go round much better before it can’t anymore.

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