Reflections

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  1. MHS

    It will make me pause and have more empathy towards people.

    3 years ago
  2. Shan

    You are going through these difficulties which you may want to share and get some further I sight.

    3 years ago
  3. d
    dcdeb

    It makes me feel like i have less of a persecution complex.

    3 years ago
  4. s
    sb

    I always try to remember that if the other person seems aggressive, unfriendly, thoughtless, angry, unhappy, unresponsive.. it may well be down to their personal battles and nothing personal. So I do try not to react in anger. I definitely don’t always succeed, especially when I am tired, but I try and this question is a good prompt to encourage me to try harder and be ever careful in my responses

    3 years ago
  5. Don Jones

    If I substitute the word, “battle” for “challenge”, then empathy and kindness comes to the fore. Life isn’t a battle – winners and losers, scheming and strategizing, gaining the upper ground… I hung my battle gear up a long time ago.

    3 years ago
    1. Palm

      Thank you Don, hanging the battle gear is a peaceful and helpful thought

      3 years ago
  6. Maeve

    Just to remember it is a good idea. I always find it helpful to know when someone is struggling, and when someone takes the risk to make themselves vulnerable in sharing what they are struggling with.

    In some situations in my daily life it is easier for me to respond with kindness, especially with children and young people.
    In other situations it is harder to respond with kindness. Oh my goodness, yes! I have my own needs for kindness and consideration, as well. If I am frustrated with the drama and chaos around me, I have to take care of myself. Even if I know that they are facing their own battle or struggle, I find that I do not always have the resources within to respond with cheerfulness and care. So I end up closing myself off so as not to get overwhelmed.

    3 years ago
  7. L
    Lauryn

    I’ve been thinking the past day about how to become more attuned to the energy of others, as well as my own. I think it’s about learning to let down some of our own defenses. Putting less focus on ourselves. Finding peace in the fact that we are all different…responding to others as opposed to reacting.

    3 years ago
  8. Nelson

    This question has good timing. Since it’s the end of the week, my body feels exhausted from the past few days’ workload. I’ve also been feeling less patient with people. My default response is to snap, yell, belittle, be right – something of a low vibration as Esther Hicks would describe. So yes, I can be more patient, but I think being more empathetic and present to the reason why a person behaves they way they do is a powerful context. They could be physically exhausted too. Maybe something’s going on at home. Maybe they’re financially struggling, etc. They may be going through something I can certainly identify with. So don’t take it personal. If I were in their shoes, I’d appreciate someone being understanding and patient with me too.

    3 years ago
    1. Mica

      Thank you, Nelson – I’ll try to do the same

      3 years ago
  9. Neil

    The Tibetan Tonglen meditation practice of “sending and receiving”
    Is one of the most simple and powerful practices to connect with others pain and hardship. There is no other we are all one.
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tonglen
    https://tricycle.org/magazine/tonglen-spot/

    3 years ago
    1. Mary Pat

      Yes, and it is so good!

      3 years ago
    2. Howie Geib

      Neil…
      Love Tonglen…it was a daily practice during my time as a solitary…very very powerful…thanks for allowing it to spring foreground in my memory…will practice today on the road…

      3 years ago
  10. SK

    Yes, everyone has a “back-story” that is waiting to be told but more than that, waiting to be listened to. If we all could only quiet our own silence to a point of total respect and awareness of the “other”. Place our hands over our own hearts to listen to our own heart beat and then realize it is the same for everyone.. I need to be the “listening post.”.

    3 years ago
  11. Mary Pat

    What popped into my head right away was to be kind in my responses to others. And then I thought about my neighbor, who is a constant thorn in my side…she is an unhappy person, and regularly finds fault with me, because I did not give her the attention she deserves at a particular time in her life.. This one is really hard for me….she lives right next door, we used to be good friends, and there are days where she will not speak to me. Or will send me critical emails….Her focus is always what needs to be “right”, even in the neighborhood…what trees need to be trimmed correctly, what the grass should look like, who needs to work on their front porches or homes I mean, it is unattainable. She is very unhappy. I don’t think it is my job or responsibility to find out why, or fix it. I do think her battle is within her, and I either remind her of someone in her past, or am just a good target.
    I can’t do anything about that, but what I can do is respond to her in a kind, but firm, manner. And the question today will help me go forward with my day in a better frame of mind, and with kindness.
    Thank you!

    3 years ago
    1. Mica

      “will send me critical emails” – what a bummer, dear Mary Pat! Give yourself a big hug 🤗

      3 years ago
    2. Holly in Ohio

      Lol. I think almost everyone has one neighbor like that. I’m glad you can put it behind and go forward with your day now. 🙂

      3 years ago
  12. Katrina

    Err on the side of grace.

    3 years ago
    1. Michele

      Good one!

      3 years ago
  13. Patricia

    I admit it is hard to understand the battles some people are facing when they take it out on me as (essentially) a bystander to whatever drama is going on in their lives. I am torn between upset, compassion and wondering why the heck they are jerks. The best I can do sometimes is to just remove myself from their presence without reacting with anger or judgment…. and then calm myself down when I’m safely away from them. (I had an incident like this the other day in a public parking lot which upset me greatly. I have prayed for peace for this man (a stranger to me) for whatever is going on in his life – and I worry for the people who may live with him…)

    3 years ago
    1. Holly in Ohio

      Oh… sorry you had that happen, Patricia. (((hugs)))

      3 years ago
      1. Mica

        What cute hugs, Holly – {{{hugs}}} to you and Patricia, too

        3 years ago
  14. DeVonna

    It’s true, everyone has demons that oppose them. I like to be open-minded and tolerant. I too am fighting demons and because of that I’m not always what I’d like to be. The best I can do is offer forgiveness, both to those who trouble me and to myself for when I come short.

    3 years ago
    1. Christine

      Devonna and others, may I ask a question? Is todays question about demons? I think I misunderstood again. I thought a battle can also be an inner pain. Or is inner pain a demon?

      3 years ago
      1. Holly in Ohio

        Speaking only for myself, I don’t think all battles are demons. Someone’s battle might be with say, poverty, or poor health, injustice, or grief, but it might also be with addiction, recovery from trauma and the anger or self-destruction that often comes with that, or their battle may be with some other internal struggle. Battle might be a fair enough word to include any struggle. What do you think, Christine?

        3 years ago
        1. Christine

          Thank you so much, Holly. This is very helpfull. English is such a rich language. Now I know what is ment by the question. And my english a bit improved 😉.
          Thank you for taking the time to take care of me 😍 and a here id a Dutch 🌷 tulip for you.

          3 years ago
          1. Holly in Ohio

            Your English is so good, Christine, that I often forget it is not your first language. I think you have a wonderful grasp of its subtleties.

            Thank you so much for the tulip! 🙂 People rarely plant them here anymore because the white tailed deer love to eat them so much and it entices them into our yards to eat first the tulips and then little trees and our vegetables! The deer are frequent pests here (I saw one on my street just yesterday), but I think I will try growing tulips anyway because they are so pretty! 😀

            3 years ago
          2. Mica

            Are you Dutch, Christine? My last name is from Friesland, and my children carry it in their 🧬 genes.

            3 years ago
  15. Pilgrim

    I try to keep to the path of kindness, compassion and generosity of spirit. Am I perfect at this? No. But I have become better over the years, due to my own imperfections and life experiences, including those in which I really needed this response and respect. … So many thoughtful responses here already Thank you, my friends!

    3 years ago
  16. sunnypatti48317

    I have definitely thought about this before, and I always try to respond with patience, love, and kindness. Compassion and prayer go a long way, and advice or help only when asked for.

    3 years ago
  17. Holly in Ohio

    One of my parents was very critical and judgmental, and I find it is now a part of my own shadow. I struggle to keep judgment in check around others who flounder over time. At least the “you coulds” in my head are out of a sincere desire that people have fewer struggles and more ease, I don’t voice these thoughts (I hope) but I would like for my head to rest. I try to always just be kind, supportive, and not judge how others are choosing to wage their battles, and I hope my own struggle with judgment does not show, because judgment is not really any reflection on them. “Everyone is facing some kind of battle,” yes, but also, everyone is doing their best.

    3 years ago
  18. Anjani

    Yeah, its a hard time ! Its hard to process what’s happening these days. Everyone has a different substantial crisis going on and responding to this is not easy at all. These situations keep passing through us all we could is support them during these times instead of giving them misbeliefs , we have care for them and keep them positive and stay positive too.

    3 years ago
    1. Holly in Ohio

      “we have care for them and keep them positive and stay positive too..” Quite right. I will try to hold this thought today. Thanks!

      3 years ago
      1. Anjani

        Am overwhelmed you liked it. Thank you

        3 years ago
  19. GratefulOne

    When you remember that each person is facing their own battle, it makes you kinder. It also just allows the compassion to overflow out of your heart for them. Not easy to remember but you have to take a breath and put yourselves in others shoes. I believe it is good for yourself and for others

    3 years ago
  20. Christine

    Caring, kindness and give time.
    I always notice, when someone by this daily question writes with a tear, or pain in the message, you dear friends overhere give answers with care, kindness, and you take time to respond so lovely. You also warmed me with your responds. I hope I can pass it on.

    3 years ago
    1. Michele

      I agree with you Christine. I adore how uplifting everyone is to each other on this site.

      3 years ago
  21. devy

    Being empathetic is paramount. Looking at others situations, how they are reacting or behaving and putting myself in their shoes by thinking of my own current and previous battles and how I or others give encouragement by listening, acknowledging , being compassionate and offering a hug..

    3 years ago
  22. EJP

    Open my heart to true kindness and compassion, while being silent and just listening.

    3 years ago
  23. Howie Geib

    Empathy is critically important of course. To know I don’t know what other people are facing each moment. Gentleness and generosity are forever getting lifted and used from my personal toolbox. I have gone through phases where, like a mercenary, I was always on the lookout for ways to ‘help’ which I then realized was a part of larger pathology and not always as wholesome as I would have wanted. That has tempered thank heavens and I mind my own business until asked most of the time.

    3 years ago
    1. Katrina

      I love your toolbox imagery and have started to use that in many situations. In fact, I will be using it in a sermon this coming Sunday. I also appreciate your ability to see that our desire to help is sometimes part of a pathology. The serenity prayers comes in handy at these times. Thanks, as always, for your acquired wisdom.

      3 years ago
  24. Kevin

    There’s a simple, yet I think profound quote that is attributed to Plato, which is:

    “Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle.”

    I have carried this phrase in my head and heart for many years, which I try to pause and remember at those moments of frustration or disappointment when interacting with what feels like difficult people.

    For many years I kept the following reflection by Isaac Penington, one of my early Quaker luminaries, on the outside wall of my office where I counseled children and teens:

    “Our life is love, and peace, and tenderness;
    And bearing one with another,
    And forgiving one another,
    And not laying accusations
    One against another;
    But praying one for another,
    And helping one another
    Up with a tender hand…”
    – Isaac Penington

    I displayed this as a poster, so many people, from parents to children, read these words coming and going, with many visitors expressing how beautiful it was. Being a public agency, more than once a passerby said it was a religious statement and therefore had no place being in a municipal building. However, I refused to remove it. And when I retired after 31 years of a wonderful career, I left it hanging on the wall when I left.

    3 years ago
    1. Mary Pat

      Thank you, Kevin….it looks a bit familiar, and am glad you shared it. I have copied it, and will put it in a prominent place, maybe on our front door….we will see. The visual is beautiful…the helping one another up with a tender hand….love that!
      I have a sign on the door now that says, “If dogs don’t go to heaven, I don’t want to go there. I want to go where the dogs go.” This is the only one I have ever considered changing it for………

      3 years ago
    2. Holly in Ohio

      hahaha… Good for you, Kevin!

      It is very lovely!

      3 years ago
  25. Michele

    Start off with a warm smile …. be a good listener:)

    3 years ago
  26. Antoinette

    Respond with kindness.

    3 years ago

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