A new acquaintance recently asked me, “What personal quality of yours do you hope your child will adopt?” Surprisingly, with all the great qualities I possess (cough), it didn’t take long to come up with the (as in the royal “the”, not the American “the”) answer. As a side note, what was surprising was being able to condense my response into one SMALL paragraph!
My first thought was that of kindness. Then I thought about my uh, ummmm, let’s just call it, ‘superior multi-tasking and attention to detail’ skills. (You can read anal-retentiveness but I’m not writing it.) Then it hit me; I’d like for my daughter to adopt the gift of understanding why a person, including herself, reacts the way they do.
How did I arrive at choosing this particular personal quality over so many others? Let me weave a story that spans a decade.
I’m going to take you back to my Fate part I and Fate part II blogs. These are the blogs chronicling how my forever husband and I met, how he dumped me and how Susie saw, with her spiritual eyes, what was going on spiritually. Even back then, when I was in such intense emotional pain, Susie was teaching me new ways of adapting and looking at things.
These conversations showed me that often a different set of eyes is needed in order to see what’s going on behind the scenes. What I mean by this is seeing why a person lashes out at you or why you lash out at them. And it doesn’t have to be lashing out (anger) either; it may be avoidance, sorrow or animosity.
A few years after Susie guided me through that emotional abyss and several instances later, I began noticing I often had a knowing or an intuitive ‘hit’ as to how a situation was different from what we saw with our physical eyes.
For instance, a client recently told me she was angry with a friend who had distanced herself without any explanation. I ‘looked’ into this and saw that the friend was trying to be supportive of my client’s busy life. She wanted to give my client some space in order for her to accomplish all that she wanted to do. I also saw that this friend would be there for my client when my client was ready to reconnect. This took the hot air right out of my client’s anger balloon.
In another instance, my client was confused when a romantic relationship ended prematurely. She didn’t know what happened as everything appeared to be going well. I ‘saw’ that this guy was very afraid of his intense feelings for her and bailed. This allowed her to understand she didn’t do anything wrong, she didn’t cause this and it helped her figure out what she wanted to do next. Hummm, this scenario sounds familiar, right Fate I and Fate II blog readers???!
One more example would be a client who was having extreme anxiety over how a coworker was treating her. I saw that this coworker was trying to help my client grow spiritually by putting some fuel on the proverbial low self-worth fire. This person was trying to give my client opportunities to say no and to stand up for herself. After hearing this, my client told me this was a life-long issue for her and something she wanted to work on. She emailed me a week later stating she had set some boundaries for herself, her friends, coworkers and others.
Developing this gift has allowed me to step into another person’s emotional shoes and better understand why a particularly painful or reactive response was triggered. It has helped me calm nerves and soothe anger. It has also helped me deal with my own emotional pain. But you don’t need to be an Intuitive to do this, you just need to be perceptive and open to looking at things in a different light.
What if we all practiced seeing each other’s pain with compassion and empathy instead of with anger and hostility? What if we all calmly said, ‘Wow, it looks like you’re having a strong reaction to what I said. Can you tell me why?” Or, what if you internally said, “Wow, I am having a strong reaction to that. What do I need to look at and work on in order to try and heal the pain inside of me so this doesn’t happen again?”
By holding off on reacting to what we think is true and looking at things from a slightly different angle, it may help all of us to heal old wounds. And that, for me, is why I chose this particular trait or gift for my daughter to adopt. I believe it can literally change the world into a better place.