People are who they are.
What if we could come to terms with that?
What if we could spend less time wishing they would STOP doing what they are doing, and more time being curious about what they are experiencing.
In a wonderful conversation the other day, a friend was sharing her frustration because her colleague wasn’t behaving in a way that builds trust…
As we explored a little, it became clear that my friend was focused on her own thoughts about what her colleague SHOULD be doing, instead of on what was actually happening.
When I said, “well maybe she has had different experiences that make it more difficult for her to trust…” my friend’s demeanor changed, and she could suddenly see more clearly.
This happens all the time.
We spend a lot of energy focusing on what we don’t like about how others are acting, and very little energy being compassionate and trying to build understanding.
And yet, there is so much FREEDOM in understanding and compassion.
Earlier this year, I was embroiled in some very challenging negotiations with a family member. I didn’t like the way he showed up as we were trying to find a resolution to our problem.
I interpreted his behavior as condescending and self-centered, and every time I had those thoughts, I got more angry, and more focused on how RIGHT I was, and how wrong he was.
Obviously, this made our situation EVEN MORE difficult.
Eventually, I realized that I was completely focused on my narrow interpretation of his actions, instead of on the bigger picture- and trying to understand his feelings and perspective, or why he might have been acting this way.
As soon as I paused and remembered that he is human, and he has a whole history of experiences that led to this moment… well, then it became much easier for me to exhale…
So- the tip of the week is simple…spend less time this week wishing that others would change, and more time trying to understand what they might be thinking and feeling,
When you develop this habit, you’ll feel more emotionally free and you’ll have more compassion to share with the world.