Accepting others' limitations



A struggle always brings with it something new- a new circumstance, a new loss. There is almost definitely some kind of unwelcome change. To understand and adapt to that change takes time. Lack of familiarity creates fear and the one thing that definitely goes down is focus. At such times others' unhelpful opinions, judgements or perceptions about us take attention away from what we really need to do. Faith is supreme in times of difficulty. When faced with a challenge we are affected by our strengths and weaknesses, our willingness to work through the odds, our circumstances and the support we receive from others. Even if our will is strong the role of others is significant in our recovery. It is important that people don't lose faith in us when we are failing. 

I have seen this first hand when I was struggling with loss in recent past. Focus and capability were the first hit. But what was more shocking was to discover how fast people were willing to write me off. Even very well meaning close family and friends would sometimes paint a resigned picture of me and my life. That often spurred feelings of dislike. Instead of feeling supported my negative thoughts would spiral down further. Negative thoughts can be pretty sticky and hard to handle especially if they are judgements from others even if you know they have no credible basis. We all face these from time to time. Although judgements and biases are short-lived when we are at the receiving end, we start mirroring the same feelings back to others. When people misjudge us, we misjudge them back. We start defining others by their failure of not seeing us correctly- exactly the same mistake "the others" are committing.

Logically it makes sense that when we are weak others should understand or give support. But we are rarely aware of others' realities as well. Many people are willing to help but are either unable to or don't know how to. Some can but are unwilling to. The wise thing to do is to accept their limitations while being mindful that no one is guilty -everyone is just trying to be happy in their own ways. There isn't much that can be done in that moment anyways when the intentions and/or capabilities (to help) have already been set. The only good that can be derived from such moments is wisdom and some looking inside, some pondering about- what were we doing incorrectly, what were we not paying attention to, how did it get here, what to do next time.






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