Reflections of an American Society

True Story: So I’m at a networking event the other day. C-Level execs only. I wait my time to meet the featured speaker. Prominent political socialite. A who’s who in this town.

Me: Great pleasure to meet you Sir, as a fellow immigrant I valued your story. I’m also pleased to hear of your commitment and involvement in local politics.

(Typical conversation. Until the smart-ass in me, wants to challenge him… I decided to ask a question earlier but was not surprised he took some softballs from the crowd.

So, I decided to be a gentlemen about it and ask his position on the issue personally.)

I asked a prominent CPA the following question;

“I’d like to get your thoughts on quantitative easing and what I believe to be its causality on perpetual debt?”

By now, I believe he has no fucking clue about what I asked. (I know I’m an asshole, but part of me was really interested in his perspective.) You see I love entertaining debate. I welcome discord, fact is most de-friend me or un-follow, so they don’t have to see my debates on issues they deem to dramatic to ruin the facade they perpetuate through social media.

Since I started developing the Single N Dating Network. Which is how this profile started, if I was promoting party, alcohol, sex, and the SoFlo way. You were interested in what I had to say.

The minute I turned to do something positive, you went the other way. It’s one of reasons why I started developing the network. People will spend hours researching their next vehicle. Some obsess over the decision and take months to decide.

Yet when it matters the most, we are too busy drowning our sorrows. Caveat we have forgotten that our sorrows have learned to swim. We continue going through the motion, keeping up the façade, all for the ever elusive social acceptance.

This is not a new phenomenon, fact is – since inception of mankind/womankind – throughout evolution we have always looked for some sort of social acceptance. The phenomenon has become extremely pervasive in the social media age et al like the proverbial fifteen minutes of fame during reality TV era.

Again, the crux of why I began to build this network:

As I mention to my kids on a regular basis – today’s society doesn’t realize the potential in the palm of their hands. Information is seconds away; yet we ignore this basic tool for success?

When I started this story, I began by sharing an experience of bringing something up, that the other person had no idea about – I assume because of his response. Part of it was my need for social acceptance.

You see my whole life I have faced this dependency by isolating myself. I thrive in solitude, it was Albert Einstein who so eloquently put it;

“I live in that solitude which is painful in youth, but delicious in the years of maturity.”

I am an introvert, socially awkward, voyeur – who finds solitude – delicious in my maturity. I love to sit and watch people interact, I’ve grown a keen sense for the ability to recognize patterns of behavior. In my age of enlightenment, it dawned on me how fucking predictable we really are.

Every single one of us shares a lot of the behavioral traits we dislike so much from others. Problem is we can recognize this behavior in others, but find it extremely difficult to recognize in ourselves? How may you ask is this possible?

Simple, just think of a recent time you gave someone else your advice. Now think of that same advice and use it on you. I’m 100 percent positive you will find an incident, experience, or situation where that same advice relates to you.

But why and how is this possible and more importantly what can we do to realize; so we may progress and ultimately reach the age of enlightenment? It’s no simple answer, moreover it’s why mental health should be at the top of everyone’s list, and or agenda. In the end we are all pretty much the same way. Different, but share the same behavioral responses to situations. Not all, but plenty to make it predictable. This is regardless the walks of life. To human is to err, is it not? We as many other species experience, only learn the hard way.

Some, well they never learn, and are stuck in behavioral perpetuity. This is where the ism’ come in to play. Our idiosyncrasies define who we are, but our behavior makes us all the same. Recently the discord sowed because of a mass shooting – moreover mass murder of innocent children – is at the forefront of debate. Whatever it is you decide, just know that in any debate, there will always be someone that hands you your ass and brings up something you don’t know anything about.

This is your moment, to do what is right. You can use that thing you use for pictures of food, parties, cat videos et al for educational purposes. Go ahead and research the topic, so the next time someone brings it up you know something about the topic. Then you may make an informed decision, regardless if the answer is: I don’t know enough to comment on that.

Our democracy is at stake, because the masses, refuse to pay attention or address real issues. I’ll refrain from saying common sense issues, because you know what they say about common sense? Well it isn’t so common. As a developer of a social media network for the past 5 years, I can tell you that it isn’t helping. It’s making it worse.

The hear no evil, see no evil, speak no evil – mantra – has been the catalyst to the myriad of social economical problems we face today. Some refuse to get involved because “no news is good news.” Social media continues to perpetuate a facade of the alleged “Pursuit of Happiness.” What those who are woke, describe as the “Rat Race.” The necessary evil we all deal with daily.

The pursuit of happiness keeps us enslaved to perpetual debt, largely caused by the liquidity experienced in the past decade to feed our need for it. Debt to buy and do things that make us happy. Is this how we are supposed to live our lives? Checking a box, just to afford happiness?

Reality is – that it will still be another decade – before things really start to change. I do believe the younger generation is energized. I do believe there are enough parents like myself that are telling, explaining, and leading by demonstrating the importance of getting involved. Slowly erasing a cold war archaic way of thinking, you know when everyone takes the hardliner, and its almost impossible to foster change? I’m sure you’ve seen this behavior at work – the beat my chest, neanderthal – whose success has blinded him with delusions of grandeur?

‘I’ll digress, it’s your life, so if anything happens to it, especially without any involvement. Do you really have a say, when rules and regulations are being passed; that have a direct effect on you? Change starts with you and only you. People can share the best advice, but in the end, it’s up to you to change – to recognize that behavior, and act to correct it. Ignoring the signs only makes things worse, for you, and those around you – especially loved ones.

In my job I work with behavior prediction. One of the best examples of this “technology” is its ability to predict based on history. Like when you use text message. The messenger starts to predict the next word, eventually entire phrases. Lest not forget, this really isn’t new technology.

You are predictable, its that simple. Words, sentences, phrases, and ultimately your actions, are that predictable. Some harder to read than others, but with the right amount of time, spent studying you; you will be as predictable as the rest of us. This is the main reason why Psychologist just want to listen. What they are looking for are patterns; behavioral patterns.

I am ardent in my belief we should all sit down with a shrink to decipher our patterns. It’s imperative for success for us to recognize behavior that hinders success; is it not? We are not the experts, quite frankly mere subjects. Our words, sentences, phrases, and actions define who we are. So why is it, we don’t make this a priority?

Forget anyone making you, why are you not going to get answers? Mental health is not a negative, it can be a tremendous positive in your life. Think of the word health, just like you do fitness health. Which allows me to segway to one of the biggest reasons why our mental health is getting worse.

We have become an overweight nation. We are sedentary, with little to no aerobic exercise. We sit at work, at home, eat processed food, with little regard to its effect on our mental health. We ignore, the signs, and try to drown our sorrows, all while we check the proverbial box.

Healthcare as it relates to your personal care, should be of the utmost importance. And I will add that the mental health cannot be fully addressed without the physical health. You see our brain is not a mechanical system like our muscles. Our brain is an ecological system. A living breathing organism with complex patterns, parts and equipment. Yet we ignore its health all the time.

I’m the first to blame “systemic failure” for the plethora of societal issues, but that failure’s causality is due to inaction of the many and action of the few. Few with obvious special interest such as the NRA. Let me start with addressing my stance that I do not believe a ban is the right course of action. Just like there are plenty of 70 yr old men, who like fast cars, yachts and have penchant for 20 yr old girs. Regardless of how ridiculous we think they are, we afford them those opportunities. (An entire different diatribe.)

So why can’t a responsible gun owner own his AR-15? Furthermore, let me make it very clear that I support stricter gun laws, one like addressing the mental health of someone who wants to buy an AR-15 just because they like them. If you like guns that much, then you above all respect its power, its ability to destroy and defend at the same time.

So, you like the majority of America supports the same. Yet there is no action or progress regardless of the insurmountable amount of lives lost to guns every single year. The fact that school is no longer a safe place for our children, lends itself to the question. How much is higher learning really worth if it is no longer safe for our children to even attend high-school?

There is a much deeper question that is being ignored, how do we get the masses to address their mental health? What can we do, to get people, and I mean everyone to address themselves before they cast the first stone? How many more deaths, and or innocent lives destroyed because of our inability to act and address our own mental health status? Change starts with you first, #ItStartsWithMe

Carpe Diem!

About Carlos Barberena
Just a guy trying to contribute to society.

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