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December 30, 2015

An Idea Whose Time has Come

shutterstock_144112840“There is one thing stronger than all the armies in the world;

and that is an idea whose time has come.”

(Victor Hugo)

I have a confession: I yelled at my family yesterday. Very loudly, and very reactively.

It was an 8-hour door-to-door travel trek for us, returning home after 8 days with extended family, with 8 checked bags full of clothes and gifts. None of us were at our best. Especially me.

But that is merely an explanation, not an excuse. I lost it, and I blew it. Now, you might think, after all these years preaching and practicing the ScreamFree way, I could get an easy pass from the fam. Nope. 19-year-old daughter called me on it, right then and there. Funny thing is, I was yelling at them to stop bickering and calm down! But, as my friend John Alan Turner likes to put it, “calm down” only works when you say it to yourself. And that, if anything, is the power of the ScreamFree idea.

ScreamFree is not just a call for calm; it’s a call for responsibility. Learning to take full responsibility for ourselves, and never taking responsibility for anyone else (like telling them to calm down)—that’s the idea whose time has come.

“I am not responsible FOR anyone else (even my kids) and the choices they make—they are; I am, however, responsible TO everyone else for the choices I make.”

Those were some of the first words we wrote when we started this ScreamFree thing some 10+ years ago. Truer now, more than ever. Imagine a world with such accurately placed responsibility. That’s a path to peace.

Of course, as the song goes, Let there be peace on earth, and let it begin with me.

Even at the airport.

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