‘Nobody can hurt me, without my permission’ –Mahatma Gandhi (quote)
Isn’t this an interesting quote? Doesn’t it make you think? Well it made me think about how people get hurt.
Now, I almost agree with this quote in the sense that I feel it is our attitude to people or situations which will ‘allow’ us to feel hurt or not. And to a certain extent we can choose not to take offence, or we can choose to be less sensitive. We can choose to be reactive or to be proactive. We can choose to be more aware of what is going on. We can adopt the attitude of not taking things too personally; we can learn to not assume things, but to seek out the real facts of a situation instead, whereby we have to face the truth rather than fiction. All this will lessen our chances of finding ourselves in a position where we can give our permission to be hurt.
But even with all that, I feel that it is still possible to find ourselves feeling hurt by other people and situations and also to inadvertently hurt others too, so how does this happen?
Is it that we are not honest enough with ourselves or others? Do we know what we want when we enter into relationships or situations? Or do we assume everything will be ok? As if others can already read our minds and know automatically? And do we tell the people who are important to us what we want or expect from them from time to time? No, I think we don’t. Are we afraid to open up to others in case they see us lacking in some way? It’s no wonder some of our lives are in such a mess! I’ve been there, done that and worn the tee shirt!
I’ve found myself in many situations where I have felt hurt and perhaps hurt others, and in other situations more recently where I chose to see things differently and I believe the following points helped me and maybe it will help you too.
- Be brutally honest with yourself right now and write down what you do want from your relationships and situations. If we don’t know what we want, then we give a message of confusion to others and we will receive a message of confusion and uncertainty back.
- Now be honest with the people in your life. No, it’s not easy and most of us run and hide from this rather than face it. Some people won’t want to face or hear the truth, but if you want to avoid hurting yourself and others, it is better to be honest and upfront about everyone’s needs in situations. Try and discuss openly what needs and wants you both have, and come to some kind of halfway balance, so that everyone involved feels that at least some of their needs are being met. Maybe it’ll reignite the spark of something wonderful to come, or maybe it will just clear up the confusion between both parties, so you can best decide how to interact with each other in the future, or not, as the case may be.
I’ll leave you with a saying I came across recently. ‘The truth will set you free… but first it will p**s you off!’ – (Unknown).Keep your sense of humour, you’ll need it!