I want you to know that the next time a person is rude to you, or gets angry or shows you who they really are then please remember that it isn’t about you. It is about them. I got so many clues to write this and that this week I had so many friends keep telling similar stories about how someone reacted to them and then they end up taking it so personally which then causes problems. I swear if you use this concept that it will change your life forever. How I react to others is about me, how they react to me is about them.
It happens so frequently that we almost forgot that virtual strangers or even people you know do things all the time that have nothing to do with you. A mom makes some comments that you think are unkind about your child. We go home and analyze it with a fine tooth comb even though it was 3 words but she had a tone in her voice that most likely meant she thinks your child will end up in juvenile detention later in life. We get upset. We talk with others and spread the gossip that she is a bitch. People talk all the time. I could say that the mom may not have had any intention to hurt you or your child, but in the end it doesn’t matter. We take her crap on because we are so used to eating it. If we could have had a moment and thought hmm, I don’t think that is an accurate description of my child. She doesn’t know me or my offspring. She doesn’t know about our life. Maybe she’s on crack. And we go home and make supper and never think of it again, because it was about her and not me or my child. She chose the words, I just happened to hear them.
Another is sometimes the words not said, such as a person you know that typically talks to you but then when you see them they barely muffle a hello to you. Your first thought, “What did I do?” Your first reaction is that somehow their lack of conversation has something to do with you. You start thinking about what could they be upset about or wracking your brain for your last interaction with them. Stop. It isn’t about you. How is it that a person walks into a room and doesn’t perform the way you expect and then you take it as a personal attack? We get so narcissistic about these interactions that we forget that maybe we should show compassion or empathy towards another first rather than last. Or the husband/wife comes home and gets mad about the mess in the porch and you feel like it is about you, because it seems every slam of the door and grumbles about how come these kids can’t pick up their coats are directed at you. The assumption is that most likely that they came home from a stressed job situation or got cut off in traffic or received an unexpected bill in the mail that then has caused irritation and then show it with the messy front entrance. We then forget that it has nothing to do with us. We take these snubs or actions by others as a testimony to who we are. Because if it truly had nothing to do with me then my friend should sweep into a room and make me feel good as she always does, or my husband/wife would come home with a hug and kiss and step over the mess in the porch like a prima ballerina with love in their eyes.
Every time we give someone that power over us we lose a bit more control of our Self. It would mean that we would constantly be on guard of every conversation and every person who came in contact with us. Maybe you are really overly nice to everyone so that they like you and hope they won’t say anything bad to you. Or maybe you are a mean person so attack first so no one hurts you. I think that this is an aspect that causes some of the most stress and anxiety in our lives because of the burden of thinking that others actions and words are about us. We feel when even a stranger yells at us that we should take it on. We think somehow that this person who doesn’t know us, or we don’t know them has the power to make us feel bad, blame us for their problems and that we must hold them accountable for the pain they have caused us.
Pain that they caused us….. We created the pain. We accepted their verbal remarks. We said ok when they said we are wrong. We took it and made it our own. Can you imagine the freedom of having that thought that….. “This person must have had a bad morning.” “Spidey senses tell me that the glue they sniffed was too much.” “I am not who they say I am.”? Freedom from the wrath of another is just a thought away.
But, of course sometimes it is our own words that could do the same thing for another. It comes down to intention and perception and even with awareness you cannot prepare how another will take you. I think that if you remember the concept that every persons words, attitude and actions isn’t about you. They made a choice to respond to life in that way and it is our choice how to accept it or not. Just as you get to choose your way of life and that others will respond to it but again only you on your path get to decide how much importance that you put on it. To be on your path is choosing to not cause harm, is what you say needed and to look upon others with love and compassion. To show empathy for another is one of the greatest gifts that we can give our community.
Spreading love and light.