by Paula on March 12, 2013

As regular readers of my blog will know, my usual style is to explain an issue or problem that I see, sometimes liken it to an every day situation, and then provide a solution. Until today I have never used my blog just to rant and rage – Yes, until today.

It has come to my attention that life has got too complicated.

Take a look at your day, your week, the last month. How much time would come under the category “Covering my arse against future downfall”?

I’m not just talking in work I’m talking everywhere – in every relationship, purchase, sale, day-to-day activity, there is a large proportion of time assigned to doing things in a way that will protect ourselves or our family or our company from future negative attack.

Somewhere, somehow we are becoming a society where all trust, warmth and humanity is being replaced by paperwork, signatures & protective action and I’m sure I’m not alone in thinking that it’s becoming very wearing.

Example 1

  • Claire wants to buy a car.
  • Claire goes to garage and sees car she likes.
  • Claire contacts organisation to do check on car as can’t trust it’s as salesperson says.
  • Claire buys car and has to sign huge form of small print as salesperson wants to cover arse against any problems that might be found later.
  • Claire has to insure car against a myriad of unfortunate things that might happen.
  • Claire has to speaks to insurance companies who record calls in case there’s comeback later on something that was said.
  • Claire struggles to compare insurance because everyone is hiding things which are important but Claire doesn’t know she needs until problems occur.
  • Claire goes to garage to buy petrol and is confronted with signs of all the things she must and must not do so they are covered in case she sets herself on fire
  • Claire wishes she’d taken the bus.

Example 2

  • Craig struggles with manager at work.
  • Craig suffers stress at result of treatment.
  • Craig’s employers have crisis meetings and make plans behind Craig’s back.
  • Craig feels more stress due to fear and confusion.
  • Craig’s employers talk in riddles as they attempt to ensure they don’t say anything libellous
  • Craig explains situation in a human and normal way
  • Craig’s employers pretend things have never been said
  • Craig therefore feels afraid and talks to Union
  • Union advises there is a case to be heard for unacceptable treatment
  • Craig feels forced to follow legal procedures when all he really wanted to do was have a chat and sort things out

Example 3

  • Sarah has a baby
  • Sarah’s baby cries
  • Sarah wants to pick up baby and cuddle baby
  • Sarah remembers midwife told her not to pick up baby in case in the future baby thinks cuddles are available on demand
  • Sarah doesn’t pick up baby, baby cries
  • Sarah feels awful but knows it’s important not to let the baby win or she’ll be punished later
  • Sarah’s baby wakes and wants milk first thing in the morning.
  • Midwife tells Sarah not to give baby milk first thing or it will grow up expecting a drink first thing for the rest of it’s life.
  • Sarah needs a drink first thing to cope with the confusing unnatural demands of having a baby…

And the solution is…

Actually I don’t have one. While we carry on being a society that has to constantly have rules and regulations to protect against the few that can’t be trusted or for problems that might happen but probably won’t, we’ll all be caught up in this massive game of covering our arse to the point where everything we do and say will be legal, correct, fair, without bias and the only interesting things that will happen will be inside all of our beautiful creative minds.

Just promise me to give it some thought? Maybe take someone aside for a coffee before taking the formal route? Give your baby a cuddle if you want to? Go a little more with gut feeling rather than triple-signed documents? Just occasionally, if you can, and ummmm….if that goes wrong, I’m not liable right? (T&C’s apply and all that)

Thank you for listening. Normal, professional, positive blogs shall be resumed shortly :-)


Sam April 4, 2013 at 11:05 am

It’s sadly true, and you hit the right word with Craig’s example, but behind all of the examples the same word can apply to some degree.
The UK is a country ruled by fear, and people are taping into that emotion to make work. I lived in NZ for 5 years and coming back it is so clear in comparison. We do have a choice how we react though, and you are right, cuddling helps (it is proven!).
Looking forward to the next positive installment!

Paula April 4, 2013 at 11:28 am

Thanks for your comment Sam. In fact cuddling would probably help with a lot of these situations! :-) We humans can make life very hard for ourselves and you are right, it’s fear and mistrust that causes these situations to spiral out of control. Thanks for reading.

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