When I first read this article by Dr. Jodi Prinsivalli, I went back and read it again. And again. I always told my late husband, “I’m just a lowly homemaker but…”
Right off the article states the Great Ones have known the secret to happiness for centuries, it’s basic to good mental health, only it’s rarely talked about. The secret? Do Not Be Offended by Others.
I can be a master of this fine art once I understand that every word, action and reaction by another is the total of everything they have experienced in life. How someone responds to me has nothing to do with me, it’s all about them.
A person’s words and actions come from their own defense, their personal fears; their way to survive. It isn’t me that triggers what they say and do; it’s what’s inside of them. And it begins as a child.
My first reaction to others when I’m young is how I will deal with similar situations in the future. In other words, if someone said something mean to me as a child and I became silent and sullen, this will be my reaction as an adult. But…
If I want things to change, want to live the good life, I need to stay in the spiritual. I need to accept that almost nothing is personal, even painful words and actions from loved ones.
I need to realize that the other person acts and reacts because of the pain they carry inside. The result of what someone suffers may be acting out, harshness, criticism. If I am able to detach rather than be offended, it’s a chance to reach out and make the world a better place.
If I don’t react to hatefulness, there is nowhere for it to go. At this point, I was ready to disregard the article until I read…
I don’t have to be a loved one’s therapist, allow myself to be hurt or taken advantage of; true compassion doesn’t allow harm to oneself. If I accept that nothing is personal, I won’t feel abused. I will realize that my worth is not measured by what someone else says, does, or believes.
The article says the “fine art of not being offended” is one of the many skills of a practical mystic. Though it may take a lifetime of practice, it is truly one of the best kept secrets to a happy life.
My life is content. Still, it’s a challenge not to take what others say and do personally, especially a loved one. Guess I need a lot of practice.
May Your Glass Always Be Half Full