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Authentic interaction

One thing that’s been going on with me recently is just a complete lack of patience for people that I don’t like, and usually if I’m not liking someone these days, it’s probably because I think that they suck at life in one or more ways.

Sometimes I just can’t fucking stand people.  I can’t stand people who are overly negative or complaining, or awkward, or uptight or any number of perceived flaws.  So I dislike them.  And then what does this end up doing?  I begin to focus on these people’s flaws instead of their strengths.  I focus on what they could be doing better rather than what they are already doing perfectly well.  It’s really just my own personal standards and expectations that I’m putting onto other people.  And it doesn’t work for anyone; this type of thinking is a negative experience for both people.

On a deeper level, it’s what these people can’t do for me due to their flaws.  I can’t enjoy a fun interaction with this person if they’re negative.  I can’t enjoy a pleasant conversation if they’re complaining and talking at me.  I can’t have in-depth talks and learn something if they’re skimming by on the surface of life.

Ideally we all stop thinking about what other people can do for us, and start thinking about what you can do for other people.  Offering value rather than taking value.  I think that along a path to mastery in anything, in order to keep progressing past a certain point you need to become a teacher as well as a student.  You must always still remain a student, but at some point you need to start passing on your knowledge and gifts as well.

So offer value.  Think about what you can do for them.  And the best thing that you can do for anyone is to be present and see the world with as few mental filters as you can.  Not judge someone for their flaws or focus on them, but to take in that person as a whole, and interact from there.  Be kind towards their flaws, just the same way that you should be with yourself.  How you interact with other people is a direct reflection of how you interact with yourself after all.

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