Live to Learn;Learn to Live
Our basic human needs are food and shelter. As humans are social beings most of us thrive to some extent or another on healthy relationships with other people. This is an individual thing and there are differences between us in terms of the amount of human contact we prefer to have. When our needs are met in this regard we have contentment provided of course that we have the food and shelter in the first place!
I am a firm believer that one should be one's own best friend. I lived alone happily for about ten years once and I have to say that at that time I liked interacting with others but actually preferred my own company most of the time. Even though my circumstances have changed now that I am married with children I still like my own company some of the time and I am a firm believer that happiness comes from within and contentment can be achieved even in adverse circumstances.
Furthermore, I have a very clear definition of the difference between right and wrong . Sometimes there are just no grey areas but sometimes we have to take circumstances into account in understanding our own behavior and that of others Learning to live in the world with a black and white attitude was a challenge and I have learned from experience that it is sometimes better not to be so rigid and make allowances for myself and others -this is an easier option all round.
Learning to live
Even though we are adults we are learning from our experiences every day. We have no choice about that. What we do have a choice about is what we choose to learn. Even if we have a negative experience in our dealings with another person we have a choice about how we deal with it. In my experience, the only thing to do in these circumstances is to avoid the person who has wronged us. This is not always possible if that person is in our family circle or in our workplace. In an ideal world one could just be selective about one's company and all would be well. Sometimes,the only choice we have is how to handle it. We can choose to waste our energy being disappointed in the person who has wronged us. Instead we can think of ways to deal with that person differently in the future so that they do not get the opportunity to wrong us again. This is the challenge and choice open to us and it is what learning to live and living to learn is all about.
Another challenge here is not to take such treatment personally. The person who is treating us badly has their own agenda for doing so. That agenda belongs to them and has nothing to do with us even if we are on the receiving end of their unreasonable behavior. Accepting this fact is a learning process which is worthwhile for it's own sake
This is the basic problem if there is a breakdown in communication or disagreement between people. We are all obliged to live and let live but only some of us do it. It is my experience that sometimes some people covet other people's self-respect. If someone does not have self-respect, it causes them to try to undermine some-one who does have it. It causes them to try and impose their will on others even when it is unreasonable and wrong to do so. Once again, the best thing to do is to avoid these kinds of people and keep better company and once again it is not always practical for one to do so.
If someone in my life who compromises my self-respect because (s)he doesn't have any of their own I tell them that this is the case. In this way,I don't give the unreasonable person a chance to dump their baggage on me.This actually works on a practical level as well making it possible to have honest and healthy relationships.
However, it is worth repeating that it is better not to deal with people like that at all. There are plenty of sensible folk in the world to interact with instead.
Say what you mean and mean what you say.
It is beyond my comprehension why so many people cannot or will not do the above. The only thing that is different about us and other primates is the power of speech. There is simply so much misunderstanding and lack of communication in the world in general that it is beyond belief.
Even some people whose communication skills are otherwise good cannot and will not say what they mean and mean what they say. I have neither patience or tolerance for this because it causes so much unnecessary confusion and bother. I make every effort to overcome this lack of tolerance and patience but there is no need for me to do so. Everyone is capable of saying what they mean and meaning what they say but everyone doesn't do it because they simply don't want to and it suits those folk better to be awkward instead of straightforward.
It is important to know that there is no need or no point in being manipulated by another person's agenda. Some of us don't have an agenda but those who do have a need to impose it on others.
For example,if someone is criticizing (s)he has to be doing nothing to have time to criticize. The person that is being criticized is always doing something to be being criticized.
Which one are you??
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