Week 9 – But I’m Right! And You’re Wrong!
“Embrace compassion, and leave conflict behind” – Oprah Winfrey
As we conclude our Conversation About Relationships, we’d like to address one of what seems to be the toughest parts of relationships…the need to be heard and the need to be “right.” We began this series addressing Relationships, the Real Purpose then we moved to Our Relationships…Our Expectations and then we discussed A Return to Unconditional Love. But what of debate? Argument? Strife? Discord? And just down right, “I’m right! And you’re wrong!” And how do we manage, not fix, not overcome, but manage these types of situations for a more sustained and happy relationship with our significant other?
First off, this is not about living in a fantasy world where disagreement, discord and differences don’t happen. However, it is about deciding which route you would like to take for yourself and creating a new reality based on those desires. We can choose to live a reactionary lifestyle where we respond and react to the things and circumstances that come our way. Or we can choose to live a proactive and intentional lifestyle where we actively decide how we want our lives, our relationships, our outcomes to be.. Living proactively allows us to be in full control of what we feel and helps direct what will happen next in that moment. We have the power to shift, change and command the reality we desire…simply by being active in our thought process instead of being reactive. Living a proactive lifestyle in the context of mitigating relationship conflict can be summed up in three steps.
- Lose ego.
Often times when we argue with another, we look to “prove our point” of the other person being ‘wrong’ and us being ‘right.’ One of the first things to ask ourselves is, is there actually a ‘winner’ and a ‘loser’ to an argument with the person we love? And if your answer is ‘yes there is a winner and a loser’ then I’d ask you to ask yourself, does it make you happy to see your loved ones lose? At anything? Our authentic desires concerning our loved ones usually are to live in a happy and harmonious environment. Not one filled with strife and turmoil. And usually, our authentic desires are to see our loved ones succeed and prosper. Not to see them ‘lose’ or be deflated, beaten or cast down in any way. Many times, the blocker of these authentic desires is our ego. Our egos fight for significance and relevance in our lives. “I’ll show her who’s boss!” or “I’m going to make him look so stupid because I’m right!” But why? So our pride (ego) can be satisfied? And we end up fighting to ‘prove our points’ to the detriment of the other person. And at the end of it all…who truly ‘wins’ or ‘loses?’ The relationship loses every time. Dumbing down the ego and focusing on the compassion and authentic desire to be happy allows the relationship to ‘win.’
- Recognize and remember, EVERY person has their own life experience, and thus every person’s perspective is valid.
Appreciate every person’s life experience as their own. Including yours! We are unique beings. Physical evidence of this show our uniqueness in our fingerprints, footprints, eye retinas and so on. We are unique as snowflakes. No two are exactly the same. Ever. Therefore, in the literal sense, we all see things differently. Sometimes slightly. Other times drastically. But because we are divinely unique, it is impossible to weigh everyone on a scale of ‘right’ and ‘wrong.’ We all see things for how they are interpreted by US. The individual. As we experience life, we digest and interpret information at different rates and with different meanings. That is not to say that we don’t all agree with certain interpretations of things, i.e. the sky is blue, water is wet, ice is cold, etc. But everyday situations and circumstances are experienced, interpreted and locked away in our brains unique to our individual experiences. We then compare and classify those experiences to others we’ve had and determine meaning for them. Each individual person does this in their own unique way because no two people have the same exact experiential patterns in their lives. Therefore, it is imperative for us, in the midst of an argument with another and especially a loved one, to recognize these differences, respect these differences and appreciate these differences. When we embrace this understanding with compassion, it makes it easier to leave the conflict behind.
- Start with the desire to love.
When living a proactive life, starting with the desire to love is like a foundational rock upon which compassion, authenticity, joy, peace and happiness are built. Let us not forget we are vibrational beings. We continually attract experiences into our lives with which we resonate. So, in other words, when we strike out in our days with an expectation of love, we create a vibrational marker the Universe is responding to in kind and more love and loving things come to us throughout our day. So when we start with the desire to love and are faced with conflict, our desire of love will attract peaceful resolution without the need of debate or argument. The desire of love is what fosters peace. So instead of looking for a ‘winner’ or ‘loser,’ we look for love, peace and understanding for all those involved. THAT is the only way true peace is sustained. By having a desire of love that ushers in peace for everyone and not just for yourself.
When we consider our relationships, with our loved ones, we must consider what costs are we willing to pay in the name of being ‘right?’ Would you rather be right or have peace? The reality is, there is no trophy, no cash reward, nobody to raise your hand in victory after a fight to prove who’s right and who’s wrong. The authentic ‘win’ is understanding when our egos are running the dramatic show, appreciating everyone’s walk is their own and beginning with a desire to love because we know love ushers in peace.