GrasshopperNotes.com - Thoughts for inspired living


February 11, 2015

Caretaker

Filed under: John Morgan's Blog — John Morgan @ 5:55 am

C167121 mIs it better to be the caretaker or the one taken care of? I guess it depends on who you ask.

For me, I prefer the caretaker role but I find it has a huge downside: You tend to not give people the opportunity to take care of you.

I’m certain the reverse is equally accurate: being cared for all the time doesn’t afford you much opportunity to be the caretaker.

Is there a middle ground? If so, how do we find our way there?

I don’t have an answer, just a suspicion. If you want to break out of your current mold, you have to ask for or agree to the opposite of what you naturally do. In the past, it’s been hard to ask and difficult to agree.

It’s hard for a caretaker to ask you to do something because they have been highly conditioned to be the doer. it’s hard for the cared for to ask for the opportunity to be the caretaker, because they have been highly conditioned to receive.

Push can come to shove when we seek the opposite. It’s like the Seinfeld episode where Jerry is arguing with his parents about who pays the check. Most of us have had moments similar to that.

It seems that the asking for the opposite has to come in little chunks and not in one, big, sweeping change. Sticking with the arguing for the check example, it could be something as simple as this: “It would give me great pleasure to be able to pay for our meal and it will give me some valuable practice to be just as generous as you.”

If you are the caretaker, entertain saying “Yes” when you normally say “No.” People will offer you care; you just have to allow them the opportunity to “do for you” from time to time.

We have so much invested in our roles that we forget we bankrupt ourselves and others when we don’t allow for the opportunity of role reversal.

Give it a go and see where it goes. You may discover that more people care about you than you ever knew or that you can take on more responsibility that benefits you.

All the best,

John



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