It’s a Racket! Giving Less than Our True Self
I’m gonna talk a little bit more about the event that I went to that I described in my last blog.
One of the things they talked about in the event was that we all create rackets for ourselves.
They defined a racket as something that looks good on the outside but is rotten on the inside.
A racket is like the candy store that ships cocaine out the back door.
You have the grandmother that welcomes the little kids and their parents into the shop, all smiley and innocent. She sells them candy and sends them on their way and it looks like a legitimate little sweet business.
But behind the candy store front there is a whole set up where cocaine is produced and packaged and shipped out the back door to drug dealers.
This is like us with our rackets. We have something that we do that looks innocent but running in the background is all this awful stuff.
They describe a racket as a fixed way of being combined with a persistent complaint. It’s a reaction to a real or imagined threat.
So I looked at my own life and tried to figure out what rackets I have going on.
Dealing with my Husband’s Anger
I identified one. This was a racket where I would complain about my husband’s anger. That was my persistent complaint.
My fixed way of being around that complaint was to shut down, close off, and not respond at all.
The payoff for me in this behavior was that I got to always be the one in the right. And he was always the wrong one.
In other words he was always wrong for being angry, and I was always right and innocent.
Furthermore, my hurt and withdrawal and lack of expression were justified because—I told myself–that was the only possible way to respond. His anger deserved my response (or lack of it). Justify, justify, justify.
By doing this I avoided my own responsibility to stand up for my power and my happiness and my sense of self-worth.
The cost of avoiding this responsibility was that I lost out on love between us and intimacy.
I also lost the power of my self-expression (probably the biggest lost in this racket). And over time this just snowballed and became a giant resentful life-sucking monster.
So that was one of my rackets that I identified. It was pretty cool to see it in the light of their matrix. To see what was really going on and especially what I lost and what I gained by that behavior.
The discussion on rackets was an aha for me. I’m certainly familiar with the idea of using coping mechanisms to deal with others’ behaviors.
What I never extended that to was what we gain and lose by using those mechanisms–that we actually GET something out of the unhealthy way we respond or interact. There’s a built-in and subtle reward.
But there’s also a cost to getting that reward. And it’s always a cost of something good and beautiful and empowering.
Rackets. What an eye opener.