This battle is daily, often hourly, and sometimes takes a minute-by-minute approach to combat. I know I’m not the only one because I hear other women saying the same thing(s) I often think, although I sometimes question the validity of their comments because some people just like to complain. I’m sure men deal with it too but I’ve never been inside the male brain so I can’t comment on their struggles.
I wonder if those of us who are trying to stay positive are the only ones who recognize that this is even an issue?
You’re probably thinking, get to the point, but right now I’m just trying to set the scene so I know you’re following…
You can wake up happy, healthy, and in an overall good mood then you realize something is off-kilter but you can’t explain what. You instantly realize someone didn’t do something they said they would. They didn’t act on something you had just spoken about. You’re making changes and they just seem to stay the same. Are you the only one who is going to stick to the plan?
If you stop to think about it, most of the time it all boils down to things being done your way in your time. We want people to act a certain way, feel how we feel, and think like we think. When they don’t do things the way we’d like, we get angry. We assume they know what we’re hoping for or how we feel. We allow our moods to instantaneously change when they haven’t acted on something we talked about less than 24-hours ago. If they’re not on top of their game with a smile on their face, enjoying every gosh darn minute of the day, we start to think something’s wrong. Am I talking to anyone here?
Okay, then let’s keep going.
It’s self-reflective really, this whole battle. We want people to be the way we aren’t yet capable of being. We set our expectations for others higher than we’re able to meet ourselves. We want them to be the way we’re striving to be, yet we aren’t happy with even the slightest effort they make. Okay, let’s stop for a second. Are we really that bad? No. But I’m speaking truth here. We want the best for people but we worry too much about who they should be that we lose track of our best self.
We allow our minds to wander about this or that, why isn’t it this way, why aren’t they seeing it this way, or doing it that? We begin to think it’s us but we blame it on them. But what is their struggle? What negative things have occurred throughout their day that they just aren’t sharing? How many times have they had to talk themselves down from the ledge because people are just people and don’t understand they’re just there to do their job? We put our loved ones in a bubble as if they aren’t going to be affected by things of this world — the day to day daunting task of going to work (or school), being around people that drag them down, environments that are less than uplifting — struggling just to keep a smile when everything around is just negative, negative, negative. We wonder why they act a certain way, forgetting that you can’t just take that stuff off when you pull in the driveway.
The trash talk, the gossip, the momentary lapse in peace we find in our own home that was lost somewhere early on in the day. It’s hard for any of our loved ones to strip down to the person we know they are and leave that daily baggage at the door.
Instead of thinking the worst, why not assume the best? Why do we have to allow our minds to take captive the person we know we love just to satisfy a thought that we’ve allowed to creep in? We know their heart. We know we’re trying so why can’t we believe they are as well? If the struggle is real for us, why can’t it be just as real for them?
I know this is speaking to someone today because it was the first thing I thought of this morning. These words are for someone who’s been a little too hard on their loved one(s)…someone whose expectations aren’t being met simply because they [themselves] are not there yet. Try taking it day by day, hour by hour, or even minute by minute if you need to. Learn how to give benefit of the doubt. When those thoughts of the worst try to creep in, fight back with knowing the best. It’s okay if you’re feeling convicted — it’s only because you care.
Sometimes we need to do a lot more work than we expect because in the end, the example we set and the grace we give is just enough to be the encouragement someone else needs.