Simply put, there is birth, life and death and although we cannot control the beginning or the end, we can choose to a great extent what we do with our ‘life’ portion. Life is about relationships, regardless of the duration or context, and relationships with humans can become challenging at times because everyone, absolutely everyone is on their own journey.
With so many individual experiences, perspectives and perceptions occurring simultaneously, it is no surprise people inadvertently (or purposely) hurt each other’s feelings. Perhaps someone said or did not say X. Possibly, you did or did not do Y. Perchance, words or behaviors were misconstrued. Learning and practicing The Art of Forgiveness is one strategy to repair and improve your relationships in a sustainable way. Whatever the particular case, remember, we are all learning and growing. Be gentle, especially with yourself.
Five Tips to Improve Your Relationships:
Stop making assumptions: If you have questions, ask the person, not your friends, family, co-workers.
Change Positions: Look at the situation from another angle to ascertain how your words or behaviors could have been misconstrued. You are NOT always right. People are NOT always trying to hurt, hustle, belittle or use you. If they are, it is time to analyze your choices and how you continue to experience these same type of interactions.
Conscious Interactions: Think before you speak. Stop spewing ‘word vomit’ on people and blaming them for being too sensitive. There is a level of responsibility and accountability when interacting with others and you are responsible for the energy you bring to people.
Water vs. Gasoline: Do you have water or gasoline people in your life? Water people have the ability to bring the cool, calming energy into your life to help foster amicable outcomes. These people will call you on your rubbish and encourage healing spaces. Gasoline people, add fuel to any situation, quickly elevating all interactions to emergency status, where there is no time to reflect or give the benefit of the doubt. It is as if they relish in the drama and actually encourage it. It is very difficult, almost impossible to forgive in such an environment. Bring more water people into your life, by becoming water like.
Compassion: Always imagine how you would feel on the receiving end of whatever you are giving out.
If someone asks or does not ask for your forgiveness, forgive them and forgive yourself. It is never too late to repair a relationship; however, you must abandon your ego, release your fear and be willing to forgive. Try to fill the space between birth and death with as many meaningful and loving relationships as you can. I Grow. You Grow. Love Grows! - Misha N. Granado, MPH, MS