Friday, September 28, 2012
"You Really Should..."
Actually, by the time you get through reading the blog this week I hope you’ll see “you really shouldn’t!” I’m not one to “should” (ahem) on others. I can tell you without reservation that I’m re-discovering enough of my own character defects through a year-long course I’m taking that I really don’t have time to worry about what you should be doing, fixing, stopping or starting.
It is usually with good intentions when someone tells us we should be doing this or that. We often feel such compassion when we see others struggling, particularly if the situation is similar or seemingly identical to something we’ve worked through in the past. We may decide the solution that worked for us is a ready-made template which our friend should use to solve his or her dilemma.
That’s not a great idea. First of all, a little struggle can be a good thing because we are rewarded with great satisfaction when we solve the problem or work through the situation. Second, no situation is identical, so what worked for us may not be applicable at all to them. As loving supporters we can be there to coach our friends along as they work through their own issues. Asking how we can support a friend is usually more effective than offering an unsolicited litany of suggestions of what they should be doing.
It’s so much easier to see the solution to someone else’s problems, is it not? Yet, our superficial assessment of their situation may not take into consideration all the events and actions that led up to the current problem. It also brings to mind the scripture that suggests we take the rafter out of our own eye before extracting the splinter from our brother or sister.
The next time you’re tempted to tell someone what they should or shouldn’t be doing, be willing to stop, take a breath and know the Truth about them. That Truth is that they are Divine Spirit in human form, infinitely capable of changing whatever their consciousness got them into. Then ask how you can support them with compassion and empathy.
In Spirit, Truth and Playfulness,Terry