Sounds impossible right?
So would it surprise you if I said it is actually impossible for anyone to EVER hurt your feelings?
Let me give you an example, and then I will explain.
Imagine a scenario where two people are arguing. One stood on one side of the room, one stood on the other. Both in their separate realities, experiencing the same circumstances from their own perspectives.
So, person A is chatting away and person B makes a statement about something that happened. Person A hears the statement, and despite the fact that they know it was fact, they “hear” it through their own set of filters, be that protective/ insecure, whatever filter they are currently hearing and seeing life through, and via their filters they create their mind’s version of person B’s words.
Based on what they thought they “heard” they make themselves upset and angry. It looks like it was person B causing it, but it happened inside person A’s mind and the resulting feelings, although it looks like person B was responsible for them, were self created and a consequence of their own thoughts. Person A now blames person B for upsetting them and making them angry, as well as for what they said.
Person B now feels misunderstood. They may feel angry. They may feel like their partner doesn’t listen to them. They may become defensive. They will almost certainly say that was not what they meant but person A won’t hear that because as far as they are concerned what they “heard” was what was said.
Now I’m not saying that people don’t say things in relationships that are upsetting and sometimes life changing, but what I am pointing to is that the experience that follows the words or actions of another is created via our amazing minds and our capacity to think.
When you consider the implications of this I am pointing to a fundamental Principle here that has helped many people who I have coached through relationship difficulties, which is this- in every moment, regardless of circumstances, the only thing you are ever at the effect of is your own thoughts and the conclusions being drawn within your own mind.
So, how is this helpful? Well firstly it removes a lot of blame. “He made me feel this or she made me feel that” is no longer something we can say when we understand the human mind. And we no longer need the other person to take responsibility for upsetting us. We don’t need them to apologise or make it right.
We are only ever feeling our thinking moment to moment. When we know where our experience of life and our feelings are coming from it lifts a veil of confusion that we have innocently been looking through.
Since we were small we were conditioned to believe that things outside us, even inanimate objects were able to create an internal feeling- like our security blanket or favourite teddy bear having the capacity to settle us down. What was really going on was our thinking settled, which settled our feelings- and unless your teddy had magic powers, this is how it works for everyone.
And, in the same way as when we understood that the “monster under the bed” was affecting us via our own creative imagination, so there was nothing we needed to do about it, we begin to see that we don’t need to give any energy to, or do anything about, the big scary circumstances that sometimes get created in our mind.
We are really good at doing well in reality. When we don’t drift off into la la imaginary land we have common sense and access to wisdom. Where we come a cropper is when we believe our imaginary world is real and we take our thoughts as facts.
Thoughts are passing, intangible things. There is no substance to them. They pass by like birds flying through the sky. Some fly silently, some squawk and attract our attention. Leave them alone and they keep flying on by and clear sky returns.
So next time you have a feeling and it looks like it is your partner, your boss, your child, bad drivers, or a late train, start to become aware of where your feelings are actually coming from and I promise you it looks like your world becomes a friendlier and calmer place.