Tuesday, 21 June 2016

"How Would I Feel If...?"

I'm not perfect.  I make mistakes, I say things and then regret them and I - like all of us, really - have been guilty of getting angry or upset over something silly, in the past.  We're only human and none of us can be 100% perfect, 100% of the time.

But lately, I've not felt great about myself and it's not because of my own behaviour.  It's because of the way other people behave.  And that sucks.

When we realise that we've acted rashly, snapped a little too harshly or done something that could upset someone we care about, it's only natural to question ourselves and our behaviour.  When we come to question ourselves and everything we do, based on someone else's negative attitude towards us, it can be incredibly hurtful.  As much as we're told "it's their problem, don't let it get you down," all-too-often, it's near-impossible not to brood over the nasty way others choose to treat us.

And so I do.  Rain is optional.

We hear the phrase "put yourself in their shoes," with regards to other people, but how often do we really act on it?  I mean, not literally, unless the person has an extensive Irregular Choice collection...

But seriously, have people just forgotten the importance of stepping outside of themselves and imagining what their behaviour would feel like, were it reflected back at them?

It's such a simple premise, but if we could all just spend a few moments thinking about how our words and actions might affect the people on the receiving end of them, I genuinely believe it might make a big difference to the way we choose to behave in the first place.

Imagine if, before we took our bad mood out on an innocent bystander, we considered how confused and annoyed we'd be if someone else did that to us.

Imagine if, before we gave someone the silent treatment, we thought about how hurtful it feels to be isolated and ignored.

Would we still want to do those things, knowing how cruel they can be?  Would we change the way we treat people?


I need to watch Friends.  It's been way too long.

I'm not saying that nobody would ever snap at someone unfairly, or get oversensitive about something trivial ever again, just by asking themselves that question, but it's got to be a good place to start, right?

We hold more power than we realise in this life.  Our words - or lack of them, our actions and our attitude towards others might seem insignificant to us, but to the person on the receiving end, it could be the difference between a good day and a very bad one.  

We all make mistakes.  But just by asking ourselves how we'd feel if someone behaved towards us, the way we are behaving towards others, perhaps we just might make fewer.

So think.

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