WordFood - how we feed or starve our realtionships

- Julia Hubbel

Julia’s ability to get this group of type-A executives to engage in true networking was incredible. She is truly skilled at motivating the group to engage and interact with each other, and her openness and honesty really come through.

— Shelley Stewart, Jr.,
Senior Vice President of Operational Excellence and Chief Procurement Officer, Tyco

February 19, 2013

WordFood of Accounts

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: , , , , — Julia Hubbel @ 7:34 am

All day long people irritate and annoy us. During the work day or in our interactions with family, small and big issues come up, and we find ourselves put off by someone’s lack of courtesy, respect, or regard for our feelings. Their words hurt, offend, insult. Many times, it’s easy to hang on to these offenses and they build, until such time as we have a very large bank account of hurts that we hold against a person. All the slights, the insults over time. These give us our right to harbor anger, bitterness, and a slew of ugly feelings against someone- or a great many people- because we feel we are owed better treatment.

This is called holding “accounts.”

The truth is that this is like taking poison and hoping that others will suffer for it-yet we are the ones who are suffering the damage of the poison. The ugly thoughts and vengefulness is coursing through us, not them. In many cases these people have no idea what they have done if we haven’t expressed our feelings, haven’t gently drawn a line in the sand because we’re a people pleaser or we’re afraid of confrontation. Perhaps you continue through your days week after week, month after month, until you ultimately explode on the other person, in such an expression of bile and viciousness that the relationship ends abruptly. And they are mystified and hurt, because they didn’t see this coming.

There is a way to completely cancel these accounts, but it takes courage, and the willingness to see the gift that others bring us. If you are willing, every time someone does something that is hurtful or insulting, to immediately ask yourself: “where do I see this in myself?” you can stop the buildup of anger right away. The truth is that people are mirrors to our own behavior. Whatever is done to us, we likely have done to others, that same potential exists in us. To admit that this exists in our humanness is humbling, and it also cancels any accounts that might build with someone else. And it’s immediately freeing.

The other day I was slightly late to an appointment with my coach, and when I got to his office I made a little joke. “The only time you get stuck behind a little old lady with her foot on the brake is when you’re late,” I said, trying to be funny. He pointed out, “How many times have you driven people behind you crazy when you’ve gone slowly, looking for an address?” Point taken. It was a small account, but an account nonetheless. They happen all day long, any time we feel anger with others.

If you are willing to face your irritation or hurt and realize that this is an opportunity to see this feature in yourself, and that this has nothing whatsoever to do with the other person, you can immediately let the emotion go. You can live free of bitterness, anger and ugly thoughts. Free of accounts. It has nothing to do with forgiveness, it has only to do with seeing yourself as you are, not some idealized view of being right all the time. And that leads to true joy.

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