May 152017 5 Responses

3 Things I Hate That People Do to Me

When I was a little kid, there was a person who loved me. She was kind and thoughtful. She couldn’t wait to see me on a weekly basis. While I appreciated her, I didn’t look forward to our meetings with the same joy as her. The problem? She would pinch my cheeks. In the typical old lady to little kid way, she would pinch my fat little cheeks and I would get embarrassed. Everyone laughed about it, but I didn’t like it.

Thankfully, as an adult, I don’t have to worry about walking into the grocery store or church and having someone pinch my cheeks (that would be a whole different blog). However, there are several things that people do to me on a regular basis which I dislike. These actions aren’t nearly as well-intended as the cheek-pinching church lady. While those who do these things might not mean ill, these actions cause ill.

3 Things I Hate

I hate it when people:

1. Talk ABOUT me rather than TO me

It’s amazing how easily most conflicts can be solved when two people sit down and have an honest dialogue. Many times it’s uncomfortable. Very few people are excited about such conversations. But it’s undeniable how productive true communication can be. Yet far more often than talking to one another, we talk about one another. Sometimes we do it under the guise of seeking wisdom from others, but most of the time our intentions aren’t that pure. We talk about others rather than to them because it’s cheap, easy, and makes us feel better without having to confront our own actions. (See: 5 People You Should Ignore)

2. Judge my WHAT without knowing my WHY

We see what people do, not why they do it. This makes it easy to critique their what, but it takes work before we can critique their why. Most people never do the work. Yet don’t our whys matter far more than our whats? This fact means before we critique anyone, we should seek to understand why they are doing what they are doing. Until we know their why, we can’t judge their what. In most cases, we assume we know their intent. However, in many cases we are wrong. If we would seek to understand their purpose, we would better understand their actions. It’s amazing how often people judge what I am doing without having any clue of why I’m doing it. At a minimum, understanding my why helps them appreciate my hopes even if they still disagree with what I am doing.

3. Define my HEART rather than my ACTIONS

I understand when people disagree with me. I often joke, “I disagree with myself half the time, no wonder you disagree with me too.” However, what I don’t understand is why many are so quick to judge my heart rather than just my actions. People often make a quick trip from “I think what you did was wrong” to “because you did wrong, you must have a bad heart.” I make a decision and instead of disagreeing with the result, they assume my heart must be evil because I didn’t do what they think I should. Often, their attack on my heart makes it difficult to hear their critique of my actions.

One Thing I Must Recognize

I hate it when others do these three things to me. Yet no matter how much I dislike these things, there is an obvious question I need to answer:

If I hate it when people do this to me, why do I regularly do these things to others?

These actions frustrate, hurt, and disappoint me. They hinder relationships which don’t need to be hindered. They make me tentative to lead and love. Yet if these things bother me so much, why would I ever dare do them to others?

It’s possible that many people do these things to me because they’ve seen me do it to others. While I can’t change the actions of others, I can change my own action. Rather than focusing on the times others do these things to me, I need to stop doing these things to others.

What’s one thing people regularly do to you which you hate?

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5 Responses to 3 Things I Hate That People Do to Me

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