I think most bloggers would admit there’s a special “high” we get when something ticks us off so much, the words just flow out in a torrent of indignation and anger. Maybe there’s an adrenaline feed going on. All I know is that it can be incredibly satisfying — and dangerous.
The danger, of course, is that our indignation blinds us to our own hubris and wrong-headedness. All those guilty of this raise your hands. (I am raising mine.) And the truth is, all those clever slurs that we thought cut the latest bogeyman down to size, are sometimes neither as clever nor as effective as they seemed when we were writing them. Guilty on this charge, too.
So what brings this up for me?
A few months ago I gave a quick plug to Coaching News and Events, a blog about business and life coaches. Basically, it is a newsy place, but from time-to-time, the editor gets into meatier topics. And sometimes he gets indignant about the indignation of others. This time it is a columnist who writes for The Morning Call, an online version of the Allentown, PA, newspaper.
The writer is Renee A. James and her piece is called Do people need a coach to play the game of life? As you might guess, her answer to her question is, “No, we don’t.” Ms. James then goes on a long, indignant rant about the shoddy industry of life coaching. Here’s a sample:
Life coaches come from all walks of life. My favorites are those who get accredited online in a matter of months, with no additional certification in counseling, social work or psychology. What kind of self-assurance must you have if you believe — in good conscience, and with every confidence that the advice you impart is truly useful and achievable — that you can help others by becoming something as unstructured and un-measurable as a life coach?
Of course, the editor of Coaching News & Events took exception to Ms. James point of view and wrote a response, Newspaper columnist slams life coaching.
It’s hard to say who won this war of indignant words, but I confess that Ms. James has self-righteousness on her side. It inspires her to nail the insipidness of some life coaching bromides with a comment like this one:
I’m trying to figure out how I would sign my e-mails at the conclusion of each session if I were a life coach, doling out wisdom to clients through the internet. ”Have a super-empowering week!” ”Go be the best you ever!” ”Say yes! And keep going!” ”You are powerful. You are aware. You are your own destiny.” ”Your life. Your choice. Everyday.”
Oh, the joy of indignation!