Offered by Willy Strohmeier, Colorado Karate Club
I would not say it is an epidemic, but it is getting scary. I have been seeing so many posts on Social Media where people are affected by this disease, that I’d just rather not even look anymore.
Zig Ziglar coined the term PLOM disease, or the “Poor Little Ol’ Me” syndrome. It is terribly debilitating and paralyzing for those that suffer from it.
You know when someone has succumbed to PLOM because it is as if only bad things always happen to that person. They are also powerless, so it requires someone else to solve their problem, mom or dad, the teacher, a boss, the government, luck, God… but never the person himself.
My children would at times show symptoms with phrases like: “But that’s not fair…” or “Why is it always me?” But I have known better than to entertain their pity party. Instead I’ve been vaccinating them with a good dose of “ if it is to be, it is up to me ” attitude. And for the most part, it’s been working wonders. Like any vaccine, this one is a bit painful too, but it saves a lot of future aches.
As a parent and a Karate instructor, I have had the privilege to spend many years watching folks become more self assured, taking ownership of their own future. And it gives me great satisfaction to know that we are forming individuals who will never simply become victims of the circumstances.
It is well apparent that both children and adults who are accountable to themselves for what happens to, and around them, are happier and more successful than those who, instead, choose to blame their poor fortune on external factors. And while it is true that we cannot control everything that happens around the world, taking ownership and responsibility for how we react to it puts us miles ahead of those who allow themselves to be battered by the winds of fortune.
One of my favorite poems is “Invictus,” which concludes in this manner:
“It matters not how strait the gate,
How charged with punishments the scroll,
I am the master of my fate,
I am the captain of my soul.”
– (William E. Henley)
So why not vaccinate yourself against PLOM as you wake up every day; asking the person staring back at you in the mirror: Who is the master of your fate? And replying boldly – “I AM.” It may incredibly change your life for the better.
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