(Don't) rock the boat

“I must be a mermaid, Rango. I have no fear of depths and a great fear of shallow living.”
Anais Nin

I've lost count of the number of times (mostly in a work setting) someone's uttered the words, "Don't rock the boat".

And what did I do?

Sadly, I did (mostly) as I was told because I was fear-ridden. And in many ways, I haven't really changed. Sure, I shout the odds once in an unbidden while and I feel better for it, but when push comes to karmic shove, I'm no different to the next person.

Then again, if there was a standard for not rocking the boat, I'd have graduated with an E or even an F by dint of the fact that my mouth can't seem to help itself, especially in the face of the often egregious, mostly ego-driven acts that I've witnessed. No, I don't mean the formal grievance or such like but, instead, I've gone above someone's head to try to make sure that said act/omission doesn't happen again.

OK, so far so good.

But I do increasingly find myself — almost in a despairing way — musing on what civil disobedience might look like across the work-life divide. You know the sort of heartfelt, soul-orientated play where I rock the boat to the point either where it breaks asunder the moribund culture or all the somnambulist occupants are shaken from their indifference to the state of the world. 

Will I take things that far?

I don't know. Right now, my wife is having to listen to my somewhat repetitive climate-emergency diatribe. Having been married nearly 30 years, she knows that my tensile strength to endure too much sh*t always has a breaking point. Previously, I've gone quietly (sometimes to my regret). This time?

Who knows?

For now, all I'm inviting is the question:

what would happen, qua the workplace, or any setting of your choice, if we all started to rock the boat?

And, for the record, I'm not aligning myself in any way whatsoever with the anti-this or that brigade, nor violent action but rather, much like Greta Thunberg and others have done, to do more than wear our angst on our sleeve (guilty) and do something that might, just might, make a difference in the corporate world.

Take care.


— Ju

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