“Every interaction with another person can be an opportunity to grow and share love” ~ FNM
I start this blog post with this statement because I’ve found it to be true with every interaction I’ve had; from the most pleasant of interactions to the least pleasant ones. Focusing on this truth or better stated, making this my natural reaction to interactions, particularly unpleasant ones, was a process.
My process all started from the fact that I believed, and still believe, from the depths of my being that every human holds love in their heart and that they’re simply trying to be happy in life. I don’t believe anyone is evil per se or that anyone’s out to get anyone else, and even if on the surface it may look this way, there’s a lot more behind the actions and behaviors of these individuals, of any individual for that matter.
Being able to deal with individuals, such as unpleasant ego driven ones, in a way that adds to your inner growth and doesn’t disrupt your own balance and internal harmony is up to you. It depends on your perspective and on how you choose to handle the situation.
It depends on your readiness to let go of your own judgements, your own definitions of right and wrong, of your own ego.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying this means you should let someone walk all over you or make excuses for their behavior. I’m saying you can accept what you’re seeing at face value, empathize by remembering the struggles of life, and focus on how this interaction can help you dive into yourself.
The process is twofold because it allows you to remain flexible and calm when dealing with an individual that is pushing your buttons and by not getting enraged and defensive this leaves you open to seeing what’s really going on and to exploring different solutions that can help this interaction. It also puts you in a position where you redirect questions to yourself on why this interaction is bothering you, which can lead you to exploring the judgements you might have regarding a specific topic or behavior.
None of this thinking is meant to say that there’s something wrong with your ways; it’s meant to help you keep an open mind in a situation that would otherwise simply be an issue and an unpleasant one at that. When faced with a problem if we stop at the problem, nothing else takes place besides the problem. What can we do with a problem if we stop there? And ultimately, stopping at a problem brings nothing else. Also, since life presents you with an array of experiences and different types of individuals, isn’t it better that you’re able to live them from a place of openness that allows you to really see what’s going on and to see more of you?
If you’re shaking your head no because you think people who are ego driven or who are behaving in the “wrong” way need to know, that’s your choice and I encourage you to go for it. Go tell them that they need to change their ways and that their behavior is totally uncalled for; but don’t expect them to smile and nod yes to your statements.
Each one of us is pretty convinced of our ways, even if on an unconscious level or even if we’re always looking for advice and confirmation from others. Deep down, there is a foundation we’re coming from, it’s deep seated within us, which is why exploring ourselves through situations and interactions brings discovery and inner growth.
This firm belief each of us has is a good thing because we should all lead a life that is true to us; but when you go to another person and basically tell them that they need to run their life and think the way you do, even if not using those exact words, you can’t expect them to agree.
The beauty of the process I shared with you above is the part of you being able to stand in front of someone who is obviously in need of lots of love and lend an ear or at the very least lend an ear that can help you explore what you’re thinking and feeling as they’re talking to you. You can also become an observer who is able to tap in to different ways of turning an unpleasant interaction into a pleasant one.
If you’ve read this far, it’s safe to say that you’re not a person who is stuck on the idea of right or wrong, but rather a person who sees the vastness that makes up human behavior and life. And let me tell you, the journey to inner growth, the journey to seeing all the complexities of this life experience are beautiful.
The more you’re able to look at things that happen to you and interact with people, even unpleasant ego driven ones, in a loving and nonjudgmental way, in a way that looks for those hidden lessons; the more you’ll uncover the amazing potential each human has and the world at large has (us included). It’s an exhilarating feeling and an amazing discovery process. Basically, it’s a life worth living with lots of “ah ha” moments! 🙂
How about you? What process has helped you deal with unpleasant ego driven people? What have been some of your biggest takeaways been from being in such situations?