Understanding Others

"You can only understand people if you feel them in yourself" - John Steinbeck
 
Boof. That's a difficult one to wrap your heart around. And it speaks to the power of compassion.
I was listening to an excerpt from Gabby Bernstein's new book " You are the Guru" and she said something that compliments this so beautifully. She said that when we feel judged that we tend to do one of two things: We either become defensive and judge that person back or we take the judgment and internalize it and beat ourselves up when we believe it to be true. Gabby says the solution is compassion. Compassion for each other and compassion for ourselves.
Why is it so difficult to remind ourselves of this beautiful, basic power of love when we are surrounded by fear? I must admit that I struggle with this when I feel hatred and aggression in others. This power of compassion is, however, one of the most powerful ways to free ourselves from self-judgement and pain. I remind myself that it is not necessary to heal or change someone. In fact, that is not my job. When I let myself go of the pressure to change someone else I let myself off the hook. I also give myself permission to accept myself for who I am. Steinbeck reminds us that we are all human and that if we look closely we can understand the humanness within each of us. We are all searching to fulfill our need for acceptance and safety and love. In fact, when we can allow ourselves compassion for others we gift ourselves the freedom from our own judgement and the freedom to dream. We give power to our dreams and allow them to grow and come true because we stop limiting them with our own judgement.
This couldn't be more true as business leaders as well as leaders of our own dreams. Confident, successful leaders are compassionate to all their team members, their customers, clients, patients, and community. Successful leaders welcome differing opinions and see the enormous value of thinking differently. We can never impose ourselves on others but lead with the confidence to inspire and influence and the confidence to honor our own values. Free of judgement of ourselves and free of judgement of others. 
Be well, My Friend.
 
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