I've shook my last hand

By FullofShif | Full of SHIF | 31 Mar 2020

I live in the United States. A social norm here, especially in business, is the shaking of hands. In fact growing up, you were always told to have a firm handshake. It signified that you were the "better" or manlier man in some way.

 With the global pandemic it's become very clear what an archaic and nonsensical practice it is. Here let me introduce myself to you by rubbing my hand all over yours even though I have no earthly idea what your personal hygiene habits are.

It shows you how powerful social norms can be. I mean if you had to explain why you did that to someone with no concept of the practice, it would sound pretty stupid coming out of your mouth. Attempting to outline a logical justification for it would be difficult because it really makes no sense whatsoever.

Due to current state of things right now I'm not out and about where I've been in any kind of situation that would call for it. And with the hypersensitivity of social distancing and the magnitude of the virus present right now , I dont think anyone would feel compelled to do it anyway. 

I think though when things have settled down it wont be easy. Decades of handshake conditioning wont be easy to just quit. I anticipate really having to work at this a bit. I know it sounds pretty simple and logical to do so but its something in our culture we have done and dont really even think about it. 

Doing something for no other reason than "we've always done it that way" is just plain stupid. Well I don't have any other reason to shake hands with someone. So that's it, I'm done and I got some unlearning to do. I've also got to prepare to explain to others why I wont shake their hand when they reach out. I'm sure that's going to happen too. I need to be prepared to explain why I won't so as to not offend.

When I think about making this change I wonder how much sickness I might have avoided over the years if I would have adopted it earlier. How much will I avoid going forward? How much will I stop others from having? When I think about all this I realize what a useful endeavor this is. Yep, it's done, I've shaken my last hand. 

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Just a guy who woke up one day realizing that I wasn't the person I wanted to be. Living a life thinking "I really should have" or "If I had only". Finally calling myself out for being full of should's and if's (full of shif so to speak). Well no more.

Full of SHIF
Full of SHIF

Musings and viewpoints from someone who overcame a life of should's and If's and is now living their best life!

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