There are so many ways that other people can hurt us. I’m sure as you read that sentence you could list a hundred off the top of your head based on situations in your life. They can ignore us, betray our trust, dismiss our feelings, dismiss our efforts, not give us enough validation and a lot more. Every now and then when I’m feeling all Ego-y and forget who I am to the core of my soul, I get annoyed with others. When you try your best to be a giving, loving person you must understand that you won’t always get the same in return. Sometimes you will be met with resistance, typically for reasons that have nothing to do with you and that you may never understand. Not all of your friends and family will be the same type of person you are. Not all of the strangers you meet will be as pleasant to you as you are to them. You know what? Something I KNOW but often times forget….NONE of that matters. It really, really doesn’t. No one’s response to your heart bears any weight at all. It’s not about you. Or you. Or me. It’s not about any of us. It’s all about what we have to give. And if you change who you are and what you have to give because of the response of another, well then that seems counterproductive. Tell this to yourself every single day, “I will not stop the way I approach others in my life based on the response I get.” And more than that, any labeling of a behavior as not as good as yours or “wrong” is actually just more separation and will keep you trapped in your Egoic mind. I’m learning this every day.
Saying that “nothing is about you” can sound conflicting when I’m constantly giving and living by the messages of doing what makes you happy and finding your passion. When I’m constantly spewing uplifting quotes to anyone who will listen “don’t die with your music still in you” “find your passion and give it away” “follow your heart” blah blah blabbity blah. And trust me those are all really great words to live by, but the real magic happens when you do all of the things to make you your best self in order to THEN find all of the ways to use that to make each and every person in your presence better, happier and more inspired. And most importantly, when you have zero expectation of what the response will be. And not only zero expectation but, zero JUDGEMENT of the response or what you get in return.
How many times do you go through life completely insulted and offended by others? There was definitely a time in my life that I did. I’m a sensitive person and I’m an open person so that can be a recipe for being hurt. There are times I still do. I constantly look for connections with other people, and like real connections not all that surface bull shit, and when you choose to be so open your feelings can get hurt. Like any other human being, I want to close myself off when I feel like someone is hurting me. I don’t though. Well I usually don’t. I have the feeling, the thought, but then I know that it’s not from my heart and I let it go. I don’t attach to it and I try my damnedest not to give that negative energy out to the world. I try to be “unoffendable”. It goes against what your mind tells you, but I truly believe that regardless of what you “do” to make yourself happy our PRIME purpose is ALL about what we can give to others. It may be as grand as giving money or things or it might be as simple as just being a good friend. A listening ear. An uplifting word. A loving partner. A smile to a stranger. And that’s it. It’s not about what we get in return. And you know what’s funny? When you stop attaching to the outcome, to the validation, to the appreciation, to the pat on your back… mysteriously you begin to receive all of those things anyway. But they won’t matter to you.
On paper it all seems so simple, for the most part we think we are good people, and we are, but think of all of the daily frustrations you have with others. Your family and your friends. I’m willing to bet it is almost always because your Ego tells you that this other person is not meeting some need of yours. They aren’t fulfilling an expectation that you have secretly given them. Try this approach from now on. It’s something I figured out about 10 years ago and although I, like most of you am still a work in progress, it’s typically how I lead my life and it’s one of my biggest secrets to peace and happiness. Approach every single person you interact with, with this one thing in mind. What can I do FOR this person? How can I make them better? How can I make their day better? How can I improve their outlook on the world? How can I inspire them? How can I give them peace? Trust me your humanness is going to test you on this one (I’m sure because I’m writing about conquering this and sending it out into the universe I will most likely be tested in this area soon, spiritual growth is funny thing). If you’re kind to someone and don’t get it in return or if you reach out to others and they are closed off to you, your Ego is going to tell you to be offended. How dare this person disrespect you? After all you’ve done for them? Your Ego will want you to be tit for tat. It will want you to see life with an “eye for an eye attitude”. You can try that approach too if you choose, you probably will sometimes and this approach may seem like a good one. Your Ego loves to feel hurt. It loves to be the victim and it loves to make others wrong. It loves to remind you of all of the ways that you are separate from those around you. But this approach will not bring about the peace and happiness that your soul knows is so easily found. We are not separate. We are connected and every little thing you can do to strengthen that connection with another will lead you to the most fulfilling life you can imagine.
And because of my calling right now, parent, what good is any of this if I don’t teach it to my children? Mostly living by example, but also reminding them of their true purpose. Of their divinity. I’ve made it my new phrase (among a million others that annoy the shit out of my kids)- did what you just say make the world a better place? Did you just make your brother/sister a better person? No? Ok great, zip it. I intend to remind them that they must approach all others with an attempt to improve their lives, always.
The Enlightened Mama