Monday, January 07, 2019

Choose Movement: A Blog Not About Exercise

A lot of you know that I've been working at becoming stronger, going to the gym, parking far away from the mall entrance, using my wheelchair treadmill at home. I think a lot of people who do this come up with their own slogans, Nike did extremely well with 'Just Do It,' but that didn't really work for me, so I didn't borrow, I developed my own, 'Choose Movement.' This was powerful for me when thinking about my life - I'm naturally a sedentary person, I typically choose to be passive, not active. Going to the store, sit in the car while Joe runs in, that was my choice. But I 'Choose Movement' when it's offered to me. This really works for me.


I ran into someone I hadn't seen for a while and we stopped an chatted. She asked me if I had noticed that she no longer commented on my blog. I said that I had and that there is an ebb and flow to people commenting on it so I didn't think about it very much. She said that something in my writing style had changed and she didn't feel as comfortable as a reader as she had in the past.

I asked her to tell me what she had noticed.

She asked me if I really wanted to know.

I said 'Yes, of course.'

Then she gave me her feedback. It was quite critical, and I have to be honest, it stung. I am old enough to know that if feedback stings it's because you recognize the truth in it. I listened, asked questions to clarify and make sure I understood, and when she finished, I thanked her for her feedback. Then, as we parted, it started.

"What does she know?"

"No one else feels that way."

"Not sure why she felt a need to attack."

This is what I do with critical feedback, at first. I have to get the hurt feelings out of the way. No one likes to be on the receiving end of helpful feedback. I did this for a couple of days.

Then, this morning, I lay in bed thinking about it. Her feedback suggested I needed to make a change in how I approached writing this blog. I had to think a little more carefully as to who my readership is and who I might be leaving out or leaving behind or criticizing by content. I thought about it and the phrase, 'Choose Movement,' came into my head. It's not just for getting my body moving, it's also about getting my mind moving, not becoming comfortable sitting in one place, getting my mind out of it's recliner chair and moving about and making change. I am, at 66, too young to get stagnant and stale. So I've dusted off my thinking cap and put it back on. To those who have felt distanced by the content of this blog, I apologize.

Choose Movement.

In every way that can be understood.

Choose Movement.


clairesmum said...

Your blog, your content, your decisions about what to write about and what to say.
If her feedback was helpful to you, great.
And the idea of 'choose movement' is one that works on many levels - avoiding 'hardening of the attitudes' is challenging for me (we are in the same age range) and I have less patience with the foolishness of the world!

lexica said...

As a regular reader and infrequent commenter, I'm interested in whatever you choose to write about. I'm glad that the feedback you got was helpful -- maintaining that kind of curiosity and openness to new information seems like an important way to stay flexible and resilient (something I've been thinking about as my 50th birthday draws into sight).

Warm regards, best wishes always and especially in this new year season, and many thanks for the words and ideas you share with us.

Kate said...

Hi Dave

I have no idea what this is about,
but I do not think there is a thing wrong with your blog,
nor have I noticed anything in the least that has changed.
I hope you do not change anything significant.
Your writing style draws people in.
Every single story makes you feel like you're in your shoes.
It identifies a problem with our culture, and often a possible solution.
It's a guide for how to advocate for yourself.
It's educational and inspiring.
I have been reading it on and off for probably ten years.
It is such a delightful surprise to rediscover it every time I forget, come back and find out it is still here.

You have inspired me to stick up for myself in countless ways, more than any other single person.

I am not mobility disabled per se but your lessons are applicable to so many groups.

Please, keep up what you're doing!

Thank you
A grateful reader