Knowing when to leave “well enough” alone…

I’ve had it all of my life; this tremendous stubbornness, married with a certain self-righteousness, and a generous compassion for those in need. And united, these traits give me the desire, belief and motivation to “help” those around me. Another way to put it, is that I have a guilty affection to “fix” people.

I don’t feel the slightest bit vulnerable sharing this because I know that I’m in plenty of good company. I was raised by “fixers,” and I’m in more than a handful of relationships with avid “fixers,” at work, at home, the yoga studio – we are everywhere. I can so easily spot another fixer; we are the first to get frustrated while driving, we’re not the best at listening, but we really don’t like when people don’t listen to us. We don’t usually let people do anything for us, training our help would likely be futile. We can’t understand why people aren’t more appreciative of the time and wisdom we donate in the form of unsolicited advice, and after a concerted effort in a situation we have been known to throw our hands in the air and write someone off altogether after not obtaining our preferred results.

You may have guessed it… these “fixers” as kind and well intentioned as they may be, are always going to end up extending themselves unnecessarily, and angry, hurt or pained. These attempts to help are uninvited, and as a result, most often dismissed. When nice gestures go unappreciated, feelings are going to be affected negatively. If the fixing efforts could be turned inward, a beautiful self improvement effort could be made.  That right there, ladies and gentlemen, is our solution. To keep to ourselves from any more hurt and frustration, unmet expectations, and wasted effort – giving ourselves the assistance, kindness, and good favor is certain to be well received. These questions will help you know when to step in and help, and when to keep to yourself:

  • Is my help wanted? Has it been ASKED FOR?
  • Why am I wanting to help?
  • Is my help going to hurt or harm anyone, including me?
  • Can I give my help and let go after that?

Loving the Unlovables

We all have them, people or groups we don’t necessary like and certainly don’t agree with. Perhaps they seem to attract calamity, they are magnets for toxicity, or they take pleasure in bringing misfortune to others. It’s so easy to look at these individuals and pick out flaws, fixate on aspects of their character that we don’t like, resolve to privately pray for them and cast them aside as an unlovable. Even if we don’t consciously harbor resentment, we retain judgment and private or overt criticism through gossip with like-minded mates. And here is where we will find ourselves descending to that low vibrational level.

We can quickly resolve that our misdeeds don’t equate the damage the “unlovables” bring to us, to others and even to themselves, however it doesn’t justify our wrongdoings. The key to a true resolution comes from a principle taught early and then forgotten… we must “find the similarities.” It’s in this place where we can recognize that we do share more in common than it may seem on the surface. Through finding likeness with our enemies, such as fear, jealousy or control, we understand that the imperfections of humanity sew a unifying thread between us. None are blameless, but all have the capacity for spiritual growth under a higher power of our own understanding. To avoid continued division in our already fractured world, we have to realize that we are all in this together. This is OUR life, OUR world, OUR universe – we’re all “in the same boat.” So if it goes down, we’re all going down with it.

If you need to make amends, get to it, as soon as you can. If you can be of service, reach out your hand. Sometimes the best way to bridge that gap, and dissolve negative emotions, is to walk across it and offer help in any way you can. Don’t be fake, and don’t endanger yourself, use wisdom from your elders and take direction from trusted sources. But by all means, go to any lengths to act in love toward those who are testing your ability to be loving to all. Act as if, at first, if you need to. No doubt the one who will benefit most from these gestures in love is yourself.