9/09 — The Key to Happiness: Stop Caring

(Okay, this could be ‘stop sweating the small stuff’. But seriously that is SO DONE. So: Stop Caring.)

But caring is important!

I hear you. You’re sitting there going, wait, what? Stop caring? But if we didn’t care, didn’t have our passion, our lives would be meaningless!

And I hear you. When it comes to what’s important to you, your passion, you have to care. You’re going to care no matter what else you try to bury yourself in. So telling you to stop caring about that would be foolish and useless.

I ain’t telling you to stop having your passion. Stop Caring is a tool like any other. You don’t use it on your passion, any more than you use your rechargeable drill to drive nails (and if you do, come over here a minute and let me smack you one).

…right, so what’s it for, then?

Seriously. Purple.

Stop Caring is a pretty useful tool when you use it in the right place, though. Want an example? Last winter I bought shoes. They’re comfortable as crap. They’re pretty. They weren’t terribly expensive. And they’re purple.

And as soon as I got them home, I got upset, because I realized that I had one (1) pair of socks that didn’t clash HORRIBLY with purple.

And I whinged and I grutched and I was cranky about my beautiful new shoes. For two days. And then I realized, okay, I could take them back, or I could be whiny and let them sit in my closet except for when that one (1) pair of socks is clean, or I could Stop Caring, and wear them with whatever the hell pair of socks I like, and be happy.

…after that the choice was pretty easy.

So there’s your tool. Use it wisely.

Use it wisely?


Oh, you wanted some examples? Have a few:

Out of basil for dinner? Don’t get upset. Stop Caring, and chuck in some parsley instead. (Yes, you can even make parsley pesto if that’s your kink. It’s pretty tasty.)

Walking the dog, and he just doesn’t want to go the way you meant to? Stop Caring. Follow him. He might just take you somewhere awesome you hadn’t known was there. (This is a lesson I’ve learned very well, having a cat on a leash.)

Dressing up for a wedding, and that top that was going to be perfect is in the wash? Stop Caring. There’s something else in your closet that’ll work just as well. And in the end, what you’re wearing isn’t that important. The important thing is that you’re there.

So what is important, then?

Tasty, tasty gravy.

Here’s the meat of it: You’ve got your passion. That’s what’s important. Everything else? Is gravy.

So take what’s important and look at whatever it is that’s bothering you through that filter.

Is it about your passion? Does it have anything at all to do with your passion? Is it five miles away from your passion, down a side road that you don’t want to drive on for fear of your entire suspension coming out in a great ugly mass? Then honey, it ain’t what’s important. Stop Caring.

But what if I don’t know?

Don’t know what your passion is, yet? Still defining it? Still have not the slightest damn clue? Stop Caring about things. Random things that annoy you. Things that stress you and bother you. If you Stop Caring about them and they slide away, that wasn’t your passion.

But if you Stop Caring about a thing and it’s still a problem? If it itches at your skin and drives you buggy that whatever it is isn’t Just So? There’s your clue. It might not be pointing right to your passion, but it’s a sign pointing you towards what it is.

But my (Mom/best friend/boss) says…

Yeah, you should hear what my Mom says. (Hi Mom!) To heck with them. They don’t know what your passion is. They don’t know you like you do. You say they mean well? Of course they do! That’s what makes them hard to ignore. But it’s your you, and you should do what you want with you.

Am I saying it’s easy to take what Society (in the person of your Mom/best friend/boss) says and chuck it? HAHAHAHAHAHA no. It’s hard as crap.

It takes practice. You need to think about it. You need to work at it. Sometimes, you’ll just need to go and do something (or not do something) in a way that you think you kinda won’t like, but will find out in the end that it didn’t matter so much, so you can Stop Caring about it.

Do it anyway. It gets easier with time. And the less energy you spend carrying around what others want you to be, the easier it’ll be to Stop Caring about what doesn’t matter, to put all of you towards what’s really important to you.

14 Comments on “9/09 — The Key to Happiness: Stop Caring”

  1. Too True — I figured out this a number of years ago. Using a wheelchair has a lot of baggage attached to it. Since I could no longer dance and run as I used to, I figured that I needed to drop the obsessing about the things I could no longer do and put my energy into things I could. As a result I found that passion plunked itself into my life and hasn’t shown any signs of leaving.

    Regina on 9 Sep 2011, 11:29 am (Link | Reply)

    • Yes. Yeah, that’s a hella good example of something that’s tough to let go of…but obsessing about it wasn’t doing you a damn bit of good.

      Kate on 9 Sep 2011, 12:13 pm (Link | Reply)

  2. I wear purple shoes almost every day ;^) They are my chucks and I wear them with socks of every color, with dresses or shorts or pants <3
    I am OCD about all other kinds of weird stuff, though…. like people folding stuff "wrong" lol… I try to let that go 8^)
    ….I think maybe I will wear my kitty ears barrettes shopping tomorrow….

    Diana on 9 Sep 2011, 12:13 pm (Link | Reply)

    • Purple _chucks_? You, my dear, rock. :)

      I totally get you with the OCD about certain things. Which need to be JUST SO OR THE UNIVERSE WILL END AHAHAHAHA *ahem*

      …so yeah. Working on letting those go, too. It’s been entertaining!

      Kate on 9 Sep 2011, 12:15 pm (Link | Reply)

  3. I love you. :)

    Although that’s incidental to the comment, it’s still important.

    Thank you, thank you, thank you! This was exactly what I needed to hear (read? I hear it in my head!) and definitely something I need to keep in mind.

    Kitrona on 10 Sep 2011, 9:15 pm (Link | Reply)

    • Also, purple goes with EVERYTHING! Really, everything goes with everything, though I’m having trouble letting go of black and blue together and black and brown together.

      Kitrona on 10 Sep 2011, 9:16 pm (Link | Reply)

      • Yay for timing, then!

        I remember getting into an argument with a fellow first-grader about the appropriateness of wearing green and purple together. We never did manage to agree…

        Kate on 10 Sep 2011, 9:44 pm (Link | Reply)

  4. This is beautiful. I so need this right now.

    MakingSpace on 11 Sep 2011, 1:41 pm (Link | Reply)

    • I seem to have had good timing for a couple of folks. Thank you, hun.

      Kate on 11 Sep 2011, 3:34 pm (Link | Reply)

      • And thank YOU! This whole thing is helping me see my life situation in an entirely different light. I had lost faith, and I feel it coming back. Every step along the way, every insight, brings me back to who I truly am. This is a great next step today.

        MakingSpace on 11 Sep 2011, 4:18 pm (Link | Reply)

  5. I remember the Buying of the Purple Shoes. It was the day I talked myself into one of my lovely pair of Mary Janes. And I wear my Sock Dreams socks with whatever I happen to be wearing, no matter the stripe or colour. I save matching for Important Events.

    Waya on 11 Sep 2011, 11:34 pm (Link | Reply)

    • Exactly! If it really is important, well, that’s one thing. But if it’s not? Yeah. :)

      Kate on 12 Sep 2011, 10:46 am (Link | Reply)

  6. Just found your site & blog from Goddess Leoni’s Big Summit! So glad I did. I love this post, something I really needed to read today! Thank you.

    rasz on 1 Oct 2011, 1:43 pm (Link | Reply)

    • Awesome — glad to hear it! Welcome. :)

      Kate on 1 Oct 2011, 5:44 pm (Link | Reply)

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