Occasionally other people do things that really grind my gears. OK, that happens quite often.
People that can’t make a decision. People who always have a comment to add. People who forget their manners. People who won’t listen to reason. People who complain but don’t make changes. People who bitch. People who are lazy. People who are super focussed on one thing. People who don’t do what they say. People who aren’t walking the walk.
The list really does go on and on. I’m sure you have a similar list.
Why do these things piss me off so much? Surely at this point in my journey I should be immune to other people’s downfalls? I should be so zen that nothing anyone else does should annoy me. I should be giving zero fucks. But I don’t seem to be able to. I might be able to keep the thoughts to myself, but believe me when I tell that if you’re doing these things I am probably calling you horrible things in my head.
The real reason these things annoy me when other people do them, if I’m really honest, is because I do them too. The things that frustrate me about other people are the things that frustrate me about myself. It’s like they are holding up a mirror reminding me of my short comings.
The other way is also true of course. The great things that I admire in other people are things I am also capable of. Kindness, motivation, intelligence, humility, confidence, determination.
You only can only recognise in others what is in yourself to some level. This is probably why devious fraudsters are able to endlessly trick money out of some people. These sweet-hearts are not stupid or simply naïve, they just don’t see that other people can have evil in them as they haven’t got any in themselves.
I have no evidence to offer you to prove this point, but I decided to start behaving as if it was true anyway. Every time someone did something that was winding me up and I stopped and asked myself what it was that I do that mostly resembles the “crime” at hand. It doesn’t stop the flicker of annoyance, but it does stop it turning into an inferno. It reminds me (if a reminder is ever necessary) that I am imperfect – a thought that sometimes goes out of the window in the face of someone else behaving in a less than perfect way.
What I’d like to do more of is asking the same question when I am admiring something wonderful about someone else. Recognising our strengths is something we don’t do often enough.
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