‘Whatever’ – A Movement Towards Giving Up

I’m sure most of us are pretty familiar with the classic stereotype of teenagers who, when called out by their parents for not being responsible in some way, would retort with an emotionally charged reaction of “Whatever, I don’t care!” Even though this may simply seem like an attempt to get out of taking responsibility and doing what is needed in that moment and may be frustrating as a parent to hear, I have found that when I hear other people use the term ‘whatever’ in their expression, there is a deeper reading to access.

When I have really allowed myself to feel the truth of this matter, it hurt to accept the fact that when we use ‘whatever’ in reaction to the stresses and harshness of human life, we are really just saying “I give up!” And to be honest, when I ‘went there’, I started to see all the ways that I have done just that in my current and past lives that have affected how I currently view and live in the world.

The manifestations of this ‘given-upness’ can come in various forms. There are those that look out at the horrors of the world and have completely given up on humanity as if there is no hope and others that give up on finding love or having true joy in their lives because they have been deeply hurt on either a physical or more commonly emotional level over and over again. But what I have found is that the ultimate form of giving up is when we give up on ourselves and begin to let the hurts that we experience change or diminish how we express in the world, morphing ourselves into a way of being in order to either protect us from feeling the pain of rejection or lack of self-worth that we have adopted as our own, even though deep down we know this to not be our true way.

This form of giving up has manifested itself in my own life in the form of taking on the role of always being the one to take care of, protect and save others, but at the expense of my own body’s physical and emotional well-being. In a sense, I would transform myself into the ‘knight in shining armour’ to try to bring truth and justice to anyone I felt needed to be backed up or ‘pulled out of the mud’, so to speak. But the problem was that I was doing this with a drive to be accepted and appreciated in a way that I had not felt the world had done for me when I simply showed it my true nature, which is to be the super sensitive, tender, caring and lovingly sweet little boy that I was, who felt connected to not only God but the whole Universe.

So, the way that I said “Whatever!” and gave up on that connection to my true essence was to get super involved in playing sports, as I had already noticed that I received attention for my athletic abilities in gym class at school. The outplay of this game of giving up on the world appreciating those sensitive qualities that I offered, would see me diving headfirst into not only many different competitive sports that were brutal to my body – both physically and in the way, they numbed any deeper hurts that were unresolved – but also alcohol and drug abuse, the ultimate ‘whatever’ approach that seemingly relieved the pain of not feeling met or accepted in the world for simply being ‘me’.

Of course, there were also the myriad of other techniques that I used to keep my body in a constant state of motion, such as hang gliding, skydiving, extremely gruelling hikes, kayaking, mountain biking, tons of coffee etc – anything to avoid feeling that stillness within me that would provide that beckoning call back to what I now know as my true essence, where there is no need for outer confirmation or acceptance. But when we give up on the possibility of feeling that deep love for ourselves, after identifying and healing those deeper hurts, the ‘whatevers’ of life begin to flow left and right. We begin to not take as much care or consideration for our work and our relationships, settling for a lower standard and therefore dropping our level of responsibility for offering the world the deep level of commitment and love that we all know deep down we can bring.

People tend to use the word ‘whatever’ when they simply don’t want to deal with an issue or be honest about how they played a part in something not working out as planned. It’s a way to absolve oneself of the responsibility necessary to learn from life and all it is showing us that assists our growth and evolution. How many times have you heard someone describe an emotionally charged situation or issue that was coming up for them in their life, only to cut off the full expression of what they were feeling without going deeper by tacking on a curt ‘whatever’ at the end of the sharing? This reaction sabotages any opportunity to truly learn from the experience.

To be clear, I’m not saying that every time this word is used it is done so in a negative fashion, but we all can feel when we use it in a way that says to the world, “I give up, what’s the point, the world is too messed up and nothing’s going to change!” – even if there is a positive aspect of not being attached to an outcome via the use of ‘whatever’.

In essence, simply observing and being honest about the times that we go into ‘whatever mode’, which can result in a lack of commitment to making the mental, emotional and behavioural changes in our life that deep down we know would support us, can initiate a journey of rediscovering a way of being that brings the full ‘you’ to all relationships and shows the world that there is no need to give up. In fact, every interaction is an opportunity to express ourselves fully without worrying about how this may be accepted or recognised by others. Holding back how we truly feel and slipping into a state of giving up on humanity is actually a movement towards giving up on ourselves, which only further ensures that the world continues to be one filled with disconnection and discontentment.

By Michael Goodhart, Aircraft Technician, B.A. Psychology, Lover of people, Nature and the philosophy of Universal Life, North Carolina, USA

Further reading:
Self-worth, the stars and the Universe
My Reflection on Competition and Sport
Developing a Relationship with my Essence

26 thoughts on “‘Whatever’ – A Movement Towards Giving Up

  1. This is such a great topic of conversation to come back to. I was drying myself this morning having had a shower and I got to feel in my body that giving up on myself and humanity is what I can feel I have done for life times. I have allowed humanity to ‘rain on my parade’ as it were or to dictate how I should be. However, I came to the decision that I’m fed up of being dictated to by an unseen force that controls our current way of living. I love me, I love life and I will share it with whomever I meet because it is worth sharing 🙂

  2. Because we don’t perceive the immediate ill effects of giving up – we think we can pick and choose when to honour truth and when to cruise…but then one day a diagnosis or incident occurs which we declare has come ‘out of the blue’ but we know inside is a simple consequence of every moment we denied our light.

    1. Joseph what you have shared with us rings true with me, when we get sick we have a tendency to blame, we do not stop to take into consideration our part in the equation of getting sick. We are not taught that we are vessels of energy and that the way we move has an impact on ourselves and all those around us.

  3. Thanks Michael for bringing more awareness to this seemingly simple word. ‘Whatever’ convey’s so much when read. I am realising just how often and how much is being said about what is not being said – much to ponder. Another way of checking out and shutting down what is there to be felt.

  4. As a collective we could say we have all given up on life and so that is why we have such lowering of standards and a lack of responsibility towards ourselves and others. We tend to look after ourselves and immediate family and let the rest of the world rot and that is exactly what is occurring because of our collective ‘whatever’. Our collective ‘whatever’ will have serious consequences and this is being played out before our very eyes in America as just one example.

  5. Thanks Michael, your blog makes me reflect on that givingupness and how this is deeply ingrained in our society and lives. It can be easily seen in extreme situations, but feeling what you share here, I can see it in much more moments and slight movements of our daily life. In fact, every movement we do separated from our Soul is a missed true expression of who we are and this comes from a previous holding back and not fully trust in what we bring. Being present in my movements and supporting myself in my expression is the medicine to those imperceptible ‘whatevers’ that may come during the day.

  6. This reminded me of when I was growing up, my reply to my mother when she asked me questions, was “what are you doing writing a book and to leave me out of that chapter” wow, what a turn around life can be when we understanding that by being open and transparent in all those things that were not Loving and now being prepared to be fully loving so we are no longer held back from the evolution that has always been available.

  7. When both parties nonchalantly shake their heads at each other and say ‘whatever’ then it’s a moment of energetic implosion, a state of energetic collapse, at least when it’s only one person that’s saying it then the other person still has the opportunity to expand by observing what’s playing out and not getting drawn into an emotional reaction. This can be hard though, particularly when we’re invested in a certain outcome.

  8. ‘If at first, you don’t succeed, try, try again. Then quit. There’s no point in being a damn fool about it.’ W. C. Fields. There is something about knowing when it is time to change what doesn’t work sometimes. But, giving up, stops any chance of moving forward.

    1. Steve the quote is actually good advice, to change our approach and be very honest. When I look back over my life at things I repeatedly did, because I thought I was being a good daughter, or how a woman was supposed to be, etc, i.e., in all the ideals and beliefs, in each case my body was screaming at me to stop, and that it was not supportive for my health and well-being – if not downright harmful. I can still see cycles I am in and perhaps being obstinate about, or unable as yet to change. and it may be that the key word there is ‘fool’, that we don’t like to realise that what we have been taught about life is not love, and that the ideals and beliefs have fooled us that they are in any way good. The honesty of the body is immense in extracting ourselves out of those harmful behaviours, and back to living from the essence of love within.

  9. I’ve also heard “whatever” used as “Ev’s”. Even though we may use ‘whatever’ as a term to give-up it can actually confirm that people really do care, but they may be so unaware of what’s needed to bring change, and/or so overwhelmed by the state of the world that the only way they can deal with it is to say ‘whatever’ – ‘I don’t care’ and switch off, when actually they do care. It’s an interesting study Michael, thank you.

    1. Melinda I’m one of those people that say ‘whatever’ I don’t care when actually I do care very much. But I don’t want anyone to see just how much I do care.

      1. Lovely that you shared that Mary. ❤️ We are all learning to be ourselves and share the depths of our feelings and sensitivity.

  10. I feel that a large part of why we’ve given up on ourselves is because we’ve completely lost sight of who we all are. I am now beginning to feel that exquisiteness of who we collectively are and it makes me want to cherish and honour myself even more. We are so, so precious, truly we are and once we begin to feel that again it will wipe all of our current complacency off the planet and we will be imbued with true purpose.

  11. It is great to zoom in on every little detail of our life. Just one word casually said can tell us enormous amounts about ourselves and how we are living. In the end nothing is nothing when everything is energy.

  12. There’s another phrase that’s a spin off of ‘whatever’ and that’s ‘it’s all good’. When you feel into when this phrase is used it tends to be used in the exact opposite situation, i.e. people tend to say ‘it’s all good’ when really it’s not good at all. And if I was to expand on it’s true meaning (and this is how it ties into the use of ‘whatever’), what we’re really saying is ‘things are actually crap but I can’t be bothered to really look into why things are this way and so I’ll simply say ‘it’s all good’ when it’s not and that stops both of us from talking about this in any depth.

    1. Well, you have definitely exposed this saying of ‘it’s all good’ Alexis, as I have never liked that phrase myself, since it always sounded like someone literally ‘putting their head in the sand’ like an ostrich and not wanting to see the corruption, the harshness, and the general disconnection and unsettlement around and within themselves. Perhaps the next time we hear someone use that phrase we can, instead of just complying and condoning the checked-out way it is used, ask, is it..really?

      1. Yes, Michael, I can feel how in the past I have given up when I sensed that ‘all was not as good’ as I was asked to consider ‘it’s all good’. I can feel the irresponsibility of enjoining the energy of ‘given-up-ness’ and condoning what is indeed an untruth. Slowly we are beginning to question our dissolute ways and come back to a way of living that asks us to be more than all of this – to be the divine beings that we truly are.

  13. Michael, another astute observation about humanity and once again you’re spot on, you’ve summed up the current climate of so many, one that is characterised by the word ‘whatever’, basically ‘I can’t be bothered’ and collectively it feels like most of us can’t. We also have to be super aware that even those who appear to be highly motivated may also be living in a state of ‘whatever’, as you have so brilliantly detailed with your own example, being motivated can be a very checked out and given up state.

  14. Michael it feels as though you are reflecting back to me my life of giving up on myself because no one wanted to hear or validated what I had to say. So I just gave up on life and myself. I just couldn’t be bothered any more, there is a saying ‘Talk to the hand (’cause the face ain’t listening)’ well that was me. Until I met Serge Benhayon and Universal Medicine and from studying the presentations and attending the workshops I have brought myself out of my withdrawn state. I understand it doesn’t matter if people don’t listen or want to hear as long as I speak my truth it is heard the world is actually listening, waiting and watching. And there is then a responsibility to keep speaking the truth that we all hold in our bodies.

    1. Every move we make gets registered and every move we make is either in step with God or out of step with Him and so it’s neither here nor there if anyone is even present to witness us moving in truth, Life everywhere is affected by every move we make. It is our individual truthful movements that will merge together to form a foothold here on Earth, so that wherever anyone is on the planet they will begin to feel the energetic truth of Life and eventually no one will be able to ignore the collective call back to our original Oneness, the pull will be too strong. Herald the day!

  15. Whatever we say, think and do; how we say, think and do anything, sets a standard within our body of how we relate to everything and everyone around us.

  16. What if we lived every word we shared so that it came from a lived way then our words would be true and non-imposing because this is the virtue of living from the True Love we all innately are.

  17. Gorgeous Michael – your words have helped me understand in a whole new way the extent to which ‘given up ness’ infiltrates our lives. The flippant teenage reaction is maybe obvious to observe – but that part of me that says ‘I know the truth but I don’t care’ well that’s insidious. You beautifully frame that everything matters in the most profound way.

    1. I am beginning to realise how deeply sensitive we all are, we can feel the vibrations of everything, and we don’t want to feel the crap in this world or perhaps take responsibility for the fact that we have all contributed to the mess we are in. We dull ourselves down and race our bodies to try and stop feeling what we cannot stop feeling and as you say Joseph we know the truth but we don’t care enough and this is insidious in our society.

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