Change the mentality!
Is it possible to change the mentality? Practical Americans, who think that nothing is impossible, answer in the affirmative. Changing your mindset requires you to refocus your values and make sure your actions align with them. If you have a problem with your new state of mind, remind yourself why you wanted to change it. As long as you don't give up, you will find a way to succeed.
Did you notice what the Dutch ambassador said in the 360 degree interview? And when, at the persistent insistence of the journalist to give us a solution to our troubles, the audience expected to say that only elections and a change of government are the solution, he said that we need much more: to change our mentality.
For years I have been writing about this oriental mentality of ours and how destructive it is for a democratic society of free people who are governed by laws, not individuals. In the back of my mind, I was always inspired by the pages of "Consular Times" of, I almost wrote, "our" Nobel laureate, Ivo Andrić, and personal experience, of course. I pick up the book printed in 1945, hold my thumb and let the pages fall. I occasionally stop for examples of the mentality that both us and foreigners have problems with that I haven't cited before.
"Wake up!" Daville thought quickly, wake up and shake off this sea and emerge into the sun, rub your eyes and breathe some fresh air!" But there will be no awakening, because this low fear is the bottom of reality. Those are the people. It is their life. That's what the best among them do." "It was one of those strange surprises that one experiences in the East. There was no connection between the real inner life of a man and his written word." "Why that lying?" Where did this futile, almost childish ferocity come from? What does their laughter mean and what does their crying mean? What does their silence hide?... What is their true face? What is life and what is calculated acting?
When do they lie and when do they tell the truth?” “He will never find a reasonable measure of these people and their actions.” "See what lies and violence can do together." "Silence. Three bodies weakened by idleness, constantly either burning with alcohol or tormented by the need for it, breathe and seem at rest, stretched out in grass and warm shade." "Whenever it came to ordinary matters and the regular relations of everyday life, his judgment was perceptive, ruthlessly accurate, and trustworthy. But as soon as he was faced with more complex and finer questions, his spiritual laziness and moral indifference made him generalize and make quick and simplistic judgments."
"So sensitive when it comes to themselves, and so angry and rude when it comes to others." "He had difficulty distinguishing a lie from the truth, and constantly vacillated between unfounded suspicion and excessive confidence."
Is it possible to change the mentality? Practical Americans, who think that nothing is impossible, answer in the affirmative. Changing your mindset requires you to refocus your values and make sure your actions align with them. If you have a problem with your new state of mind, remind yourself why you wanted to change it. As long as you don't give up, you will find a way to succeed. By surrounding yourself with others who are more positive and optimistic, or look for ways to learn from different situations, you can learn new behaviors that will improve your state of mind. But here's the catch. Behind this is the will to change the individual and the politician.
Political will refers to the degree of committed support among the main decision makers for a certain solution to a given problem. Continuation of EU membership negotiations is such a problem today, for example. Lack of political will is considered the main reason for not solving a certain problem. But how can we recognize an act of political will among the Macedonian parties? When a political actor is willing to devote valuable time, energy, funds and political capital to bring about change, when he is willing to take risks and pay a price to achieve a goal, we can safely conclude that he manifests "political will" for change. And, in the context of the quotes above, it manifests a desire to change our Balkan mentality.
(The author is a professor and the first minister of foreign affairs)
THE LANGUAGE IN WHICH THEY ARE WRITTEN, AS WELL AS THE VIEWS EXPRESSED IN THE COLUMNS, DO NOT ALWAYS REFLECT THE EDITORIAL POLICY OF "FREE PRESS"