Don’t Live with a Chip on your Shoulder, Live with One on Each

Have you ever lived with a chip on your shoulder, also known as a grudge? What was that like? Did you enjoy it?

Some people do enjoy living with a grudge, though it probably depends on what kind of a grudge. Generally, though, living with a grudge is not healthy, and often not even the best for motivation, as much as grudges motivate some people. So why then, am I promoting living with two grudges in my advice don’t live with a chip on your shoulder, live with one on each?

In a word, the answer is obsession. In two words, lack thereof, in reference to obsession. Living with a grudge will unbalance you and your life. It’s all you’ll be focused on, whenever you have the time to do so, and sometimes even when you don’t, neither of which is healthy in the long run. Living with two grudges, meanwhile, will let you split your time and effort between them, never going to extremes you would with just one grudge due to the need to split everything with the other grudge. It’ll also let you take a break from either grudge, when needed, without feeling like you were losing focus since you’ll have it on the other grudge. You can concoct the second grudge, if needed, like proving something to yourself, so only one grudge would have to be real, or have two real grudges. Either way, devise ways to align the two if you wanted to go far with one or both. It’s the balanced approach I’m going for here. Fortunately, the chip on your shoulder idiom allows for this visually in two beautiful ways: the symmetry of having a chip on each shoulder, and the balancing act required to keep each chip on its shoulder to discourage any extreme reactions.

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This post is one of 70 quotes I wrote, each with an accompanying essay, in my e-book and paperback Stars I Put in my Sky to Live By, on Amazon or Smashwords (choose your price including free!).

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