We may not like some people and some people may not like us. Inspite of this, we may coexist mutually , peacefully in the same world under the same sky. I can't make it a condition for everyone to be fond of me or someone to be fond of me at all times. We feel irritated by each other even in most close relationships at times. But do these times last? Fortunately no. Times change. They change automatically. People change. They grow. They mature. We change. We grow. We mature. There are certain things we disliked in the past but we have developed a liking for lately.
Sometimes it is difficult to learn simple facts about life. Let us try and reflect over these two phrases today 1. "People are largely unpredictable" and 2. " Everything is temporary".
Are they making sense to you?
One of the students of class tenth in one of the schools where I was conducting Feeling Minds®Experiential Emotional Education was highly unpopular amongst his classmates. Nobody liked to sit with him. This boy was a fair, plump boy. When I received a special request from the class teacher to meet him separately as she was worried about his class performance, I found him to be a decent boy with nice, pleasant manners. It was difficult to understand why would anyone not like him.
I asked to meet a few of his classmates to seek their opinion about him. They told me "Ma'am , he is very irritating" .
When I asked them to describe in more details, they said "Ma'am, he doesn't like to study" "He talks about all other things besides studies" "Ma'am, he once threw my water bottle when we were in 3rd Std. It broke to pieces and I got a beating at home because it was a very expensive one. I don't like him since then. "
These reasons were strangely inadequate for the kind of boycott the boy was facing from the entire class.
I then made the class do an activity the next day. Where they stood in two circles. An inner circle and outer circle. The people in the inner circle had to step in one by one. All others had to describe what they liked about this person. Which he was free to accept or reject.
Then he has to tell the group about some of the things that he doesn't like about himself. And the others were to comment whether this is true about him or not. For e.g he could say "I am not good at Maths"
The outer circle would then discuss and comment , even if he is not good at Maths, can he still live in the same world as they are living?
Can he be in the same class?
Can he breathe the same air?
Can he still be friends with them?
The class would scream at every question "Yes Ma'am !!!"
They learnt an important lesson on "Unconditional other acceptance" over the next few days, with the help of many such activities.
We are all after all imperfect fallible human beings and so are others!
If we can give this discount to ourselves , isn't it logical to extend it to others too?
We may like or prefer for others to behave according to our parameters but unfortunately they don't have to and we have but very little control over them. The sooner we understand this, the less heart burn we are going to suffer!
And hence we learn to accept ourselves with our pluses and minuses and accept others with theirs!
When acceptance seeps in , the doors to change open.