Have you been in a challenging circumstance with someone wishing something were different about it? Wishing they acted differently?
Do you catch yourself thinking, ’If only he or she were more loving, more understanding or loving, less critical, more forgiving…..things would be better” ?
I write about this today, as I sit in non-acceptance of a particular conversation with a dear friend which did not go as well as I expected. As I sit here, I can think of a hundred things she could have said or done different, that would have made that interaction less painful for me. I wish I was treated with more kindness, more compassion, more value and respect. The more I stay in this place of expectation, the more resentful I get.
Earlier this evening, in a conversation with another friend, I heard him share an experience of his, of how he had not felt supported by his friends when he needed them the most. He had been going through the most traumatic period of his life and he felt alone and abandoned. He spoke of the same feelings of anger, resentment and also entitlement. He said, they never measured up to his expectation of them, His internal judgement was, “they ought to know or do different” He also spoke of the insights he had gained after months of accumulating anger and how he was finding a way to make peace with it.
Before we go about making the wanting & needing wrong, because it only leads to unmet expectations, lets get something straight. Most all of what we feel entitled to in our relationships with others, is something that we most definitely deserve. We thrive on that, it nourishes us but we look for it in the wrong places.
We are all needy for acceptance, understanding, love, compassion, respect, freedom, space, forgiveness, being witnessed, and much more. The reason we demand that from another is because we feel the lack within ourselves. Trying to fill ourselves by others is like each of us walking about with empty glasses, expecting to be filled by the other.
To truly fill ourselves, we have to go to the source to receive these divine qualities. For some of us that source is God, for some, Universe, Nature etc. Our relationship with the world is a reflection of our relationship with ourselves & our relationship with the source.
A Question to ask ourselves is, are we giving ourselves that same, love, respect, space, understanding, compassion etc that we are expecting or yearning from another ?
This reminds me yet another story of a client who shared an experience of how she had been treated poorly by her boyfriend. I love the analogy she used to describe it. She said she saw herself standing under his window while he threw garbage down at her. She cried and pleaded him to stop and she continued doing so, and yet did not move. She stood there, screaming at him, and making him the bad guy for treating her so and yet continued to stand there. It took her a while to see how she had been treating herself exactly or even worse than how had been with her. She hadn’t realised until then that she hadn’t been listening to her heart, and that she had options now. She chose to move !
It took her a while to see what she had been doing to herself.Eventually, when she filled herself up with love & kindness, began to value and respect herself, she found her relationships more intimate and trustworthy.
It’s not that life or people change suddenly and everything falls into place when we love and accept ourselves for who we are. Our relationship with our elves is an ongoing lifelong commitment. What will shift though is our perception. Our acceptance of ourselves with all our fears and neediness, brings us to a humbling place of acceptance of others for they are just like us.
When reconnect to our hearts, we find our heart at peace in relationships and it dissolves the layers that get in the way of truly seeing and being the the present with another.
When you find the love, you find yourself.
The secret is in the love.
You are the love, not another.
Everything is in the love,
and everyone needs the love.
If you find this, what more could you want?
When you know, what could you want?
When you have the knowledge of the love,
you feel peace in your heart.
The jewels are inside you.
~ Shaykh Muhammad al-Jamal ar-Rafa’i ash-Shadhuli
Music of the Soul
Life & Relationship Coach (CPCC)
PO Box 72280, Dubai, UAE
May 4, 2016