If something doesn’t go the way we would like it to, it sometimes happens that we first want to blame someone for the situation that has arisen. Pointing at someone else is simply easier than looking at yourself. Because the latter can be confronting and that often means that there is work to be done. But how nice that you are ‘suffered’ by this situation, because that can mean that you are growing and that the current situation no longer suits you.
Shame or reflect?
I recently read a post from someone who I thought was complaining about the overcrowded glass containers in her neighborhood. I was wondering what the writer of this post would like. Because of the chosen path on Facebook, she may have wanted to gain support from others who also find this ridiculous. Or maybe she hoped that the municipality would read along and take action. At least someone is to blame for this. And apparently it’s not her, because of course she’s not going to shame herself on social media.
Is there another way to deal with this that will improve her situation? If you looked at yourself instead of blaming someone, what could be the signal? Why is this woman annoyed by this while others may be less excited about it? Could it be, for example, that she may become aware of her own waste or drink consumption? From her impatience or urge to control?
Why is this happening to you?
When you point at someone, ‘what have you done?’, the first thing that other person often does is defend themselves. It is no longer about the content of the message, but about the accusatory tone.
By giving energy to the question of guilt, you do others, but especially yourself, short. It has a negative charge. It will bring you much more if you initially become aware of the situation that has arisen. It doesn’t happen to you for nothing. Try to see it as a signal.
When you consider the situation for a moment, you are better able to ask yourself the why-question: why does this happen or affects me? The answer is not always readily available, but it may be easier to present itself if you ask this question in the first place. You can then gain insights or hunches that help you understand the situation better and come up with solutions more easily.
Understanding the situation
It may be painful to note, but many things that bother us, we have created or attracted ourselves (unconsciously). In the past, I attracted a man who had a huge impact on me. One minute he was very loving and empathetic and the next he was a jerk, he was unreachable and accused me of all kinds of things. But I couldn’t do without him and as an independent, tough woman I didn’t understand that at all. Why did I let him in my life?
After being deeply touched and emotionally shaken a number of times, I began to become aware of the situation. I took a step back and began to understand why this was happening. My lesson was that I had to be independent not only rationally, but also emotionally. I was allowed to give more love and attention to myself. At first I thought this was a very tough and painful lesson, but after a while I could be thankful that I had attracted this situation. The independence eventually allowed me to focus on things that suit me much better than on the actions of someone else.
Wonder provides insight
In the meantime I have become a lover of disruption and change. I see that it brings me more than holding on to the current situation. I only look at changes that affect me, that affect me. And that ranges from Trump’s trade war to a street blocked off on my route. I have to be honest, my first reaction is often some inward curses: who is inventing this, what does he think he will achieve with it, what a situation, …
Once I’ve recovered from these negative thoughts and after the clouds of unwanted change have lifted, I treat myself to room for wonder and some lithe thought.
For example, could such a trade war unintentionally have a nice downside? Perhaps the affected countries will get creative and get their stuff from their own country instead of from the US. Saves a lot of polluting freight movements.
And what if it turns out that the closed road leads me via the alternative route to someone I would not have met otherwise? Or can you see the nice house that is for sale?
It is true that if I don’t wonder or don’t look, I won’t notice either. But that makes sense.
By looking at myself and creating a solution that suits me specifically, I make myself independent. I don’t have to wait until someone else understands my situation and may or may not take action.
So if you want things to be different, make sure you’re the captain of your own ship and set your own course. You create your own change.