What we don’t like, or what makes us uncomfortable, is not really about it.
It’s about us.
Me. I. You.
‘It’ is just being it. It is just doing what it does.
‘I don’t like how you ignore me’ could translate as: you are doing that thing that reminds me how little I think of myself, and reminds me that I sometimes do it to others when I don’t feel up to facing something, and realising that makes me feel uncomfortable .
‘I can’t talk to you, you get so defensive’ could translate as: You act like how I feel when people put me on the spot or tell me the truth, I see my own issues with what I’m trying to talk about in you, and it reminds me of how hard I am on myself.
‘I do so much for you and you don’t give the same back’ could translate as: I’m annoyed that you’re not as worried about what people think as I am and you don’t need to try so hard, it shows up how needy I am, and reminds me that I do all those things hoping to be liked and to get something back, because I don’t appreciate myself.
‘I hate how she dresses, what a tart’ could translate as, I don’t understand how she can be so free with her body and not care what people think, her openness with her sexuality shows up how bound and unfree I am, and picks at the side of me that wishes it could conform less.
What we dislike is ALL about us, our experiences, our perceptions of the world and ourselves.
Everything is a mirror held up to our eyes, both affected by us and we by it to varying degrees. That person that annoys us, isn’t annoying us, we are annoyed at them. We are annoyed at our discomfort. That person is merely triggering a reaction to our own reflection; to seeing ourselves and the things we cannot accept about ourselves that lie beneath, or to a similarity of a past experience we did not like; compounding the dislike.
We can point and shout, blame and judge, convince ourselves that it is them, they are the bad ones, they are the problem, they are the cause. It is the issue, it is the obstacle, it is the annoyance.
Sure, it may have its imperfections, and sure, they may have their issues, but what are their issues to you? Do you really think it’s personal? No, you are holding up a mirror to them too.
The more you recognize your own reflection, the less you will judge. The more you realise that you, and only you are in charge of your perceptions and reactions, the less you will be a mirror that shows others only their flaws, and the more you will show them their beauty instead.
The more you begin to stare your reflection in the face with compassion, the less you will rise to what you used to find annoying or frustrating, for then you will only see the truth that is someone else’s insecurities, someone else’s experience.
When you feel it, that little itchy ant crawling on your skin, that clamp tightening at your chest, and the streams of fire blood speeding up in your veins in reaction, really look at what is happening. Step back and ask yourself ‘ why am I reacting like this?’ ‘What emotions am I feeling?’ ‘What does this remind me of?’
You will see it is your issues with yourself, flaring up in seeing it reflected through someone else’s issues.
Let them deal with theirs, and you deal with yours. Try softening yourself a little, and helping them to deal with theirs…because essentially then you are helping yourself aren’t you?