This isn't a New Year's resolution. Those have never worked to my satisfaction. Quite the opposite, as they gave me something else to feel was left uncompleted. This is more of a - until I think of something else to call it - grown-up realization. How much of our lives have we wasted having hurt feelings?
With a commitment to painful self-monitoring, I have set the intention of letting go of the inadvertent (or intentional) perceived slights that we all encounter regularly. I don't want to be a baby. Feuds baffle me, snits and silences - and huffs - don't factor into my life view. Time is short. Energy is very likely finite. Our wits may be gone at any moment, and so may we. Let's say there are only two choices: harmony or disharmony. One nourishes the spirit, keeps the heart younger and healthier and the other puts stress on all our organs and systems and kicks our auto-immune response around the block. Not to say messes with our sleep and digestion.
But more importantly, choosing to live disharmoniously through small-mindedness, self-involvement, the false notion that we are somehow the center of the known universe, unmet childish needs or the simple greed of always wanting more than anyone else, creates a ripple of unhappiness that spreads among the people we know, people we care about. It takes us away from living in contentment, not so very easily found to begin with and something to be protected and treasured. Two sources in my life introduced me to the phrase "butt-hurt" within the past 12 months. I swear I'd never heard it before but look around and you'll notice that it has reached epidemic proportions. And I get to talk about this because I'm telling on myself here as one who desires to end unattractive behavior. If someone doesn't call me back, I trust they have a reason. A disparaging remark about something I feel is important is not worth a confrontation and not worth the energy it takes to mope around feeling out of sorts. We each see from our own perspective but are capable of a generosity of spirit which honors another point of view. It isn't necessary to agree; it is greatly helpful to make room for other ways of being, doing, thinking or saying.
In my first job I worked with a woman who was born in the Netherlands and who had a phrase much like our "make a mountain out of a molehill" but to my imagination, much more vivid. It was, as she said it, "To make from a fly an elephant." I wish for myself and for everyone I know that we let the small stuff go, that we let go of any need for an extra helping of attention, the creepy-feeling need to make someone else feel less-than by making our response to their...whatever...so distruptive and so big. We all get it wrong, oh, pretty much every day, say things we wish we hadn't to people we love and just trip over ourselves like in those nightmares about a junior high dance. Not everyone is going to love us, there may be some who cannot even tolerate us. We will survive it.
I may call this posting back, edit it into oblivion, find a better way of saying what I mean since I believe we all possess the desire to be understood. As universal as the feeling may be, the realization of it is illusive. Some people will undersand us somewhat, a few, perhaps, a bit more, many, not at all and what does it matter? I assume that mostly we do our best...if we had better we would have brought that to the picnic and tomorrow we just may HAVE better, but for now, this is it, for me and for you. Even though it makes me go "ewwww," it really is time to grow up. There are some things that just don't look good after about the age of 14.