The Christmas holiday season is a truly magical and wondrous time, AND it can also be the most stressful time of year, when we feel we are sometimes forced into situations with people who are "difficult", to say the least!
There are holiday shoppers engaging in the hustle and bustle in their own individual worlds; there are some family members that we may feel a dread facing, due to their criticism and other demands; and we tend to loose ourselves in the mad dash to wrap up work, while feeling a need to participate in the flurry of activity that inevitably comes, starting about a month before the Christmas holidays!
I'm guessing that you have all heard of the tried and true ways to cope with the negativity of others such as walking away; counting to ten; or avoiding the situation or person altogether. Hmmmmmm.....Wondering.....How has that worked for you?
If you walk away, aren't you only getting temporary relief?
Wouldn't it be great if you could find a way to diffuse the situation, without leaving the other person feeling invalidated, and yourself feeling annoyed that you were subjected to it in the first place?
Wouldn't it be better to come from a place of love and compassion?
And....one more thing we sometimes forget is that it is important to look at these situations as an opportunity for self-reflection.
Please take a moment to look at the questions in the image below:
Below are some more questions for you to consider:
- What if we were to choose to approach "difficult and annoying" people with acceptance, empowerment and compassion, and the absence of ego?
- What if we were to choose to look at others through a lens of compassion rather than blame, judgment or contempt?
- What if we were to choose to take a look at opposing opinions of others as gateways to open up to possibilities? How would your life change? How would you grow?
- Would your perspective change if you chose to see the hurt and frustration that is underlying the criticism or anger that is being directed at you?
- What if, instead of challenging the person in a judgmental way, you chose to simply "call their consciousness into awareness"?
- If it all comes down to love, wondering how you think a bully would react if we were to choose to give him/her a warm hug with our words when he/she lashed out at us?
- What if you decided to choose look at the way others treated you as a mirror to reflect back on yourself?
- What if you were to look at the way others treated you as an opportunity to increase your self-awareness and enlightenment? And then asked yourself.... "Is it REALLY about them, or is it you?"
Honestly, the best coping strategies could be those universal values that we can choose to live by each and every day:
Love, patience, kindness, humility, forgiveness compassion and open-mindedness.
If you feel you have truly come from a place of love, patience, kindness, humility and open-mindedness..... and.... If you feel that you have not mis-judged the situation, and when you feel in your heart that you have done everything you can do to show compassion towards and nurture that individual, THEN and only then, can you invoke your right to walk away or avoid the situation all together!
If you can anticipate situations or people who are going to "push your buttons", ask yourself the most appropriate question(s) from the list above, and then bravely step into the situation with knowledge and compassion.
Next, visualize the situation working out in a loving way for both you and the other party(s), and set the intention of peace, forgiveness and love!
When you honestly approach every person and/or situation from your personal and universal values it also gives you clear guidelines for setting boundaries...YOU choose!!