I was recently in a situation where the actions of another person where confusing, hurtful, and frustrating for me. I spent so much time judging this person, being sad that this person wasn’t acting in a way that I expected them to, being hard on myself, and wondering what I could have done to make this person act this way. I have to interject that these are all behaviors that I know will only cause me more suffering, but I do believe that trying situations are always tests to see just how much we’ve learned on our paths in life.
I was working really, really hard to release this person and to forgive this person and for some reason I was having difficulty getting to a place of peace. It wasn’t until a few weeks ago, when a lesson from A Course in Miracles changed everything: Accept people where they are. This concept shifted me out of a judging, ego mindset, and back into a loving, compassionate place. I immediately felt like I was viewing this person for the first time, and could see that they were simply doing the best they could in the moment. The charge was gone, and now I feel released from the mental anguish I was putting myself through over it. What a relief.
I then began to realize that incorporating this principle with every person we come in contact with would create so much more understanding and compassion in this world.
Acceptance of where other people are means ditching judgment and expectations of how you think people should act. It also means releasing the inferiority complexes we pick up at times when we feel more evolved spiritually, mentally, and emotionally. The truth is we will never fully know what is going on in someone else’s life. We don’t know the full truth and all their stories. Though at many times, we try to write our own versions of their stories to suit our ego’s best interest. I’m guilty of that as well.
What we do know for certain is that we are all just doing the best we can with the circumstances we are given. We’ve all been given very different lots in life, and so the way in which we handle what life throws us will be different. The major key here is that it is not our job to judge others for how they handle life, it isn’t even our job to try and change people to make them “better” or more tolerable. Our job strictly is to consistently live in our own light, love, and truth.
When we accept others as they are, we give them the space to find their own path and to learn their own truth. Just because we accept and love others as they are, does not mean that we have to participate in their stories or mentalities. With acceptance and compassion, come healthy boundaries.
If you’re struggling in a relationship or situation with another person, try switching your mindset to allow them to just be where there are on their path in this moment. Don’t try to change them, don’t allow yourself to get wrapped up in their story. Simply accept. Notice what happens, and let me know in the comments!
Michelle is Peaceful Mind Peaceful Life's Creative Director and resident writer. She has a degree in Journalism from Indiana University and is also a certified holistic health coach through the Institute for Integrative Nutrition and registered yoga teacher with trainings with Anuttara Yoga Shala and Strala Yoga. Michelle has a deep desire to help people find happiness in all areas of their lives, and truly believes the Peaceful Mind Peaceful Life movement will bring lasting change to the world. Michelle splits her time between Florida and New York City and loves connecting with people from all over the world. If you'd like to contact her, she can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org