When We Take Things Personally

It’s so easy in relationships to take things personally. In truth what other people do is just what they do, it isn’t about us even though it can really look and feel like it is.

Lately I’ve been seeing this more clearly in my own relationships. I’m seeing the normal human tendency to take what others do as being about me. Fortunately I’m also seeing what wakes me up to that fact so that I can fall back into peace.

Sometimes it looks like what my partner is doing is about me.

I know that due to a lifetime of social and cultural conditioning PLUS the amazing special effects department of my mind, that I’m going to take his behaviour personally at times, even though deep down I know it can’t be, because it doesn’t work that way.

Everyone’s behaviour is a natural consequence of how reality looks to them in the moment. Given how life looks to someone in any given moment, they’ll do the best they can.

The good news is that moments are just moments; we live in an ever-changing, constantly evolving mental landscape. The other good news is that when people see better, they do better. Automatically.

Seeing better is the most natural thing in the world because thought flows and transforms by nature.

With different thinking comes different behaviour. It’s all so impersonal even though the details of what was said or done can trick us into believing it has to be personal.

The fact that I know this but don’t always see it is not a problem or anything worth trying to fix.

I know that consciousness will bring my thinking to life as if it were reality, and if I have thinking that someone’s behaviour is personal it’s going to appear that way.

More often than not I see the humanness in that and can give myself a huge break. Telling myself I should know better is a recipe for getting more stuck in my illusory thinking, not less.

What wakes me up to the fact that I’m buying into an illusion is the feeling.

It doesn’t feel good to take things personally. It doesn’t feel good to blame yourself for the behaviour of others. It doesn’t feel good to make impersonal things about you.

Our feelings are these beautifully reliable guides. They let us know when we’re on track or off track with our thinking.

When we get caught up, take things too seriously and treat the illusion as truth, we don’t feel the peace, love and wisdom that we are.

When I’m with my partner and my good feelings plummet, I know it’s a surefire sign I’m caught up in some thinking and believing something is real and true when it isn’t.

In that sense, thank god for feeling bad. What a relief we have a built-in check engine light that will click on when we’re using our thinking in ways that harm us instead of help us.

When we’re feeling good, loving, peaceful, wise and well, we’re in touch with our true nature. When we don’t feel that, we’re taking our thinking too seriously.

So if you’re taking something someone did personally that’s okay. You’re human and the illusion is very compelling.

But in truth you are both doing the best you can with your current level of thinking. When that shifts, as it naturally, inevitably will, you’ll see differently, you’ll do differently, and the impersonal truth will become more and more obvious.