Today I was once again treated to a co-worker’s verbal abuse, but I am very grateful because she gave me the opportunity to practice addressing her rude, belligerent, abusive behaviour calmly and to put a stop to it in no uncertain terms. She also gave me the opportunity to realize that not only can we treat people respectfully, allowing them to return the favor, we can also treat people disrespectfully, and can expect some to respond in kind as well. Even more, she gave me an incredible appreciation for the self-love I’ve found over the last decade or so. I realize that when I treat people rudely, it is truly a reflection of something in myself I am finding unpleasant.
One area which continues to puzzle me is people with a sense of entitlement. I cannot conceive of having expectations of the Universe or any of its inhabitants without a willingness, a desire, a need to give back! But this sense of entitlement, of deserving everything for nothing has really become viral in recent years! Have parents spent so much time tippy toeing around their poor little darlings’ feelings that lessons like discipline, responsibility and consequences have gone by the wayside? I see too many people in their 30’s still acting like irresponsible college kids, going out and getting drunk, dragging into work and taking issue with expectations that they actually put in 8 hours work for 8 hours’ pay! Or they expect their boss to keep them happy. As if an honest day’s pay wasn’t sufficient? They have to only give them work that they like to do as well? Excuse me, but it’s called “work” for a reason. Besides, if everything we did in life was enjoyable and made us feel good, we’d have nothing to compare it against, and frankly, we’d soon become dissatisfied!
And so, I am grateful to the Entitled for showing me how very fortunate I am to have been brought up expecting to be responsible, to take pride in my work and to treat the people I work for with respect. I certainly don’t always agree with how they choose to run things, but it is their company so I can offer them the expertise for which they hired me, but if their decisions do not coincide with my perception of the right course, graceful acceptance is far more attractive than pouting or belligerence any day of the week!
But the Entitled have to understand that they do not have the right to walk on the rest of us either. I am constantly learning how best to draw my line in the sand. In some cases, my lines are crooked and keep getting washed away by the tides, but in others, they’re starting to gain a substance of their own and are able to adjust to the ebbs and flows quite admirably. I am realistic enough to know that I won’t change anyone’s beliefs, but idealistic enough to hope that some will start seeing past themselves because of the examples set by the rest of us.
Every day, I meditate on Love, Acceptance, Forgiveness and Kindness. Some days, it’s more difficult to focus than others, and those days are the ones for which attaining that focus is the most rewarding! Loving, accepting and forgiving those who would try to make a doormat of others is truly a challenge, and requires a great deal of squelching of knee jerk reactions.
I have learned that expressing anger at a person or situation only gives them power over me, and adds energy with which to perpetuate their undesirable behaviour. Thus, my focus is on turning those negative feelings into something useful and positive, like Gratitude!
I am a work in progress and my path is neither a direct nor a particularly straight route but then, the journey is far more interesting! It’s a bit like choosing to take I-5 to drive to Northern California. It’s pretty straight and the time it takes to drive the route may be shorter, but its monotonous and a lot less interesting than meandering up the coast, maybe finding someplace unusual to stop along the way or just discovering how amazing the land has become through eons of wear and tear on the part of the weather.
The winds of entitlement may blow and batter me, but my foundation is solid and the wear and tear smooths my rough edges and uncovers some very precious elements.
And who knows what might come to pass as I tumble against other “stones” in the great tumbler of life!
Love and light.