Not taking things personally

Would you get mad at a snail for eating your lovingly-planted greens in your garden? Would you stay mad and hold a grudge? You probably wouldn’t take it too personally.

This is exactly how to respond to people who offend you. They don’t know what they are doing. They haven’t the adequate level of realization to do otherwise, so view them the way you would view any living being that is incapable of knowing better. Such people are like a mosquito that stings you. A wasp buzzing around your window. A hassle that produces temporary discomfort.

You can get briefly angry, frustrated, or annoyed. But if a snail, mosquito, or wasp affects you deeply and lastingly, you are only handing them the power to keep you suffering.

This is how we have to view people in our lives who irk us. Not looking down at them as if they were some pest, of course, but to accept that they have their limitations. Everyone does, including ourselves. Everyone is incapable of something, and that something could very well be what irks you. They would do better if they knew better, believe me. And we would do better if we knew better as well. Just like that snail slobbering over your precious greens, they can’t help it.

Understanding this is crucial in developing the skill of not taking things personally. What do you take personally? Would you like to change that?

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