We all in our lives at some point or the other, look around and want some change in the situations, surroundings and people. Either we do not like the surroundings, OR the situations are too hard to deal with OR people whom we work with or live with, are not up to our expectations.
Wow! Right there is a key word “Expectations”. That is the core reason for wanting something to change, because there is a big gap between what we want and what we really see and perceive.
This more often happens with people around us, to be more specific with whom we live with or work with, because we spend most of our lifetime doing either of these two.
No two people in this universe are same. Each has their own brought up issues, environments, people and situations they have ran in to. Their experiences form a major part of their mental framework. Spiritually we are all same, but to understand humanity at that level takes quite a bit of evolution and to get there should be the purpose of life.
Anyways, when two people with completely different levels of experience come together, it is very hard to see them behaving the same way. So, the conflicts of opinions do come about ideologies, habits and approach towards life. This results in trying to work out a common ground for their co-existence. Obviously that needs a lot of adjustment from both sides. But how many of the people in this world are willing to accept that adjustment? Some do, and some do not.
The ones that do, continue to be associated, and the others, depart from each other.
This problem typically arises in a family (wife and husband, parents and kids), where one of them is not happy with the other’s habits, ways of life and approaches. In such scenarios, we want the other person to be better, or like us. This is where things can go wrong completely. In some situations where a wife is not clean in her habits, she does not keep her clothes properly, she does not clean the kitchen well, but the husband is a Mr.Clean and he does not accept that life style. Who is correct here? The wife who has always been used to living her life that way or Mr.Clean? Obviously from the little observation, we know, that it would be ideal if Wife changes and they work out something in common.
But in real life scenario how many wives and husbands are willing to change. Is it even acceptable to ask the other person to change? Mahatma Gandhi, like many other greatest philosophers, saints and Humanitarians, mentioned once “You must be the change you wish to see in the world”. Yes, that is a very non-violent and peaceful approach to the world and family problems.
In a situation like the above one, there are only 2 possibilities:
The parties involved, can continue living or working together and Accept each other the way they are.
Or they call it quits and move on with their own lives.
The first option is probably the best if there is not a very big gap between the habits and ways of life. But again neither one of them can influence each other by asking them to change. You accept the person the way he or she is and keep giving Love and Care the same way, immaterial of any change in the other person.
People change when they really feel like changing from inside OR some strong event triggers the change from within. When they decide to change, they will change. Trying to change some one by preaching, instructing and pestering will never ever bring change in people. In fact, change in people who are stuck in habits that are detrimental to their life, is possible, only by Acceptance.
Especially in case of people who are addicted to dangerous ways of living like, alcoholism, drugs, psychological issues or any other ways of life, change comes only in sharing, caring and acceptance. Acceptance of the people as they are, with a cheerful smile, with welcoming arms, no matter who they are, no matter what they do, Blind and Unbiased Acceptance is the only solution.
Acceptance can actually bring a potential change, because, every human has some thing deeper in them called “Consciousness”. That conscience knows what is correct and what is not. People get in touch with that consciousness, only in silence. When we are complaining about the people, it is causing more and more turbulence within the person complaining and also the target.
But, Acceptance of people the way they are, creates a sense of peace inside. It generates a beautiful feeling of being loved. In that silence the other person actually gets to go deeper and love him/her again for what they are.
Once Dr. Wayne Dyer, a spiritual seeker and healer, shared a personal experience. His daughter was going through a serious drug addiction, he tried taking her to many psychiatrists, healers, saints and rehabilitation centers, but none of them brought any change in her. He was almost tired of the whole process. Here we have a person who is transforming lives of millions of people all across the world, and his own daughter going through the addictions. He could do nothing about it.
One day she told her Dad,
“Dad, I will change when I want to and when I feel like. I know what I am doing is wrong, but I have to make that decision”. So she knew inside her.
After a point, he just let go the whole situation and started accepting her the way she is. He never questioned her, lectured her nor took her any where for counseling. She kept loving her without any expectations. And one day she changed, she stopped it all.
We all think we have to change people around and we develop attachment towards them and we want them to be so called “PERFECT” beings. We are all perfect in our own ways. We all have impurities and filth in us in our own ways. Everything is very relative in this world. Good and Bad are relative terms. Read my article “Theory of relativity” to delve deeper into this issue.
Most of the people go through agony and say, “She/he is not changing, Oh God, Help me to change that person, or situations”, just an emotional and anxious reaction to perception of how things are. Rather, a gentle approach is to let the person be the way, because each person is different to start with, and some are totally different to the extent that even gentle approach is hard, In such cases call it quits. But none of the trauma, pain, and lectures asking the other person to change is going to do any good.
Like some one said, “Change is the only constant thing in this world”. So everything and everyone changes forms, attitudes and behaviors. But do we have patience, time and ability to accept the situations and people as they are during the period of turbulence. There is no prescribed formula for anything in this world. Acceptance of situations, people and circumstances is the key to peace.
As discussed earlier, In any given circumstance and at any moment of time, we have two choices, we can either move on to another state or remain in the same state, but learn to completely accept and be in harmony with the situations and people around.
The assumption, that we have control over issues outside us, is a MYTH. Anything we can do is only inside. All of us in this world, look and yearn for Acceptance, by people and world around, Of course ultimately we realize that accepting ourselves to begin with, is the key, because universe is constantly changing. Accept yourself and let other person Accept themselves.
Definitely, this article is not intended to change anyone, just a few perceptions :-)