“I see you. Really, I see you. I see your joy. I see your sorrow. I see your struggles. I see your successes. I see your determination. I see your defeat. I see your heartache. I see your love. I see your passion. I see your loss. I see your effort. I see your ease. I see the life that exists behind your eyes; the soul that you are beyond the skin that first meets the eyes. I SEE you; for you are you, and I am I, but we are more alike that what first meets the eye.”
A few years ago, I had the pleasure of attending a Yoga Journal Live event in New York City that Seane Corn was headlining. That weekend, I took a class with her where she spoke about forgiveness. I will never forget these words that she spoke (though I am paraphrasing a bit), she said, “Every day, each one of us is doing the best we can, based on the information we have learned from what our past experiences have taught us.” That sentence has forever changed the way I have seen and approached difficult people in my life.
When a person in your life brings you grief, struggles, or pain, how do you initially react? It can be understandably difficult to not allow their negativity to negatively effect ourselves. Wanting to retaliate, or allowing the negativity to fester are easy, possible responses, but, what if you paused for a moment to consider what that person has previously experienced in their life? What have they been through? Where have they been that has led to this behavior? I’m not saying that the answers to these questions makes their behavior OKAY, but what I am saying, is that it will give you a better understanding and insight as to why they are the way they are.
Festering negativity and planning a retaliation are actions of someone playing the victim role. The victim is a very low vibrational role, a role that, quite frankly, gets you nowhere and nothing but more negativity, more hurt, and more aggravation. When you decide to put that behavior on pause for a moment, and experiment with approaching the person from a place of understanding, you then, instead, act from a much more empowered place. When you act from a place of empowerment, a much higher vibrational place, peace, joy and awareness become yours.
When you take the time to understand another (particularly those that are the most difficult), their past, and what they have experienced, not only do you have the opportunity to change your behavior, but you are presented with the opportunity to realize, that none of us are really all that different, after all. We have certain qualities that make us unique, for sure, but beneath that layer, we all experience pain, sorrow, loss and heartache at some point in our lives. We all experience joy, achievement and bliss at some point in our lives. The journey there may be different, but the emotion is the same.
The more we can step back and connect over our sameness, the better chance we have of bringing healing to ourselves, and to our world. It’s not an easy journey, but it’s an important one.
Photo by: Peter Constantinople