Loving Without Condoning Poor Behavior

It’s Saturday and you wake up to a beautiful sunny morning.  You’re looking forward to an unplanned day filled with endless possibilities.  You’re happy and rested.  Suddenly out of left field you’re smacked with a curve ball on the side of your head with a rant of accusations by a frustrated loved one.  All before stepping out of bed.

A few weeks ago, I wrote an article on Acceptance | One of the Hardest Things to Do.  And I asked myself ‘Where do you draw the line between accepting the person without condoning their ‘off the handle’ behavior?’  Accepting them for who they are does not mean you have to agree with their behavior.  In fact, tough love will require you to have the courage to confront.  The key factor to confrontation is that your intentions need to come from a place of love and the well being for that person rather than from a place of anger or spite.  And even with your best intentions, it may still be received with defensiveness, anger, resistance, or withdrawal.

It’s natural for us to protect ourselves and take the path of the least resistant and remain silent.  But overtime, your inner fuming and staying bitter towards them will harm you.  Never make the assumption they’ll pick up on your silent cues and magically put the pieces together, or that they’ll feel remorseful for their actions and take the first step towards reconciliation.  They’re not mind readers, they can see you’re upset but they won’t necessarily know why you’re upset.  Plus they’re still probably upset themselves and wondering why you haven’t figured it out.  This will only create more distance between the both of you and at this point, become a battle of wills.  So take the initiative to clearly and objectively communicate what you’re seeing, experiencing and feeling.

It’s also good to keep in mind, that people’s frustrations usually stem out of their own personal issues, inner hurts or past woundings.  So it’s not you, your actions or words that necessarily trigger them but a hurt, resentment, bitterness that might already be within their hearts.  But if they’re not aware of this, they’ll think it’s you and blame you for how they’re feeling.  With this in mind, it’s easier to be patient with them as you walk beside them in their journey.

Since these hurricane days come when you least expect it, it’s emotionally difficult to brace for it.  Loving the person without condoning their poor behavior is very hard to practice.  But it’s possible with compassion, courage, love and truth.  After all you’ve said and done, ultimately it’s up to them to choose what they want to do with it.  My hope is that they’ll see the love behind your words, take responsibility for their feelings and move toward healthy steps for improvement.

© 2012 Susie Lee

Video of the Week | This is Your Life

A few weeks ago, I posted The Holstee Manifesto Poster, This is Your Life.  Today, I’m posting their video they creatively made from their poster.  This Lifecycle video calls everyone to live a life full of intention, passion, and community.

This is your life, what are you going to do with it?

Disappointments | Re-evaluate & Re-create

At some point in our lives, it’s inevitable we’ll face disappointments. It might be with our career, relationships (or a lack of), health or the world at large.  The good news is that disappointments come whenever we attempt to do anything great in our lives or for the world.  The not so good news is that it’s closely followed by resistance, doubt, cynicism, or setbacks in the pursuit of that greatness.

Why this gloomy topic?  Because I know some of us are in this journey right now.  Disappointments will often crush determination with hopelessness, despair and “what’s the use?”  Our minds and bodies will begin to shut down with weariness.  I find when I’m in this place; it helps to step away from my efforts and rest.  In the meantime, I connect with my family and friends for encouragement – drawing strength and wisdom from them.  I, also, read books, get out in nature, watch movies and listen to songs that will inspire me, as it fills me up with love, light and life. After a period of time, I have the newfound energy to help me move forward with clarity, courage and creativity.

But I understand this overwhelming feeling of despair might be a heavy burden for some people to carry that they may decide to throw in the towel.  For others, this feeling of despair may become a catalyst to grow stronger and wiser – fueling their passion, energy, and creativity.  They can choose to remain in despair or see the undercurrent of hope.  For many people, this is where the rubber meets the road.

My message to you is don’t give up on your convictions.  Disappointments are a part of the journey; it’s a sign that you’re closer to success than when you first started.  You’re an amazing being who is highly adaptable and strong-willed.  When the weight of the world is crushing you – there’s still more inside of you.  You can never be completely crushed unless you allow it.  Continue to explore, discover, create and dream of a better world… and a better you.

© 2012 Susie Lee

*This article is dedicated to my aquaterra tv co-host Peter Ormesher

Quotes ::
Anytime you suffer a setback or disappointment,
put your head down and plow ahead.
– Les Brown

Enthusiasm is followed by disappointment and even depression,
and then by renewed enthusiasm.
– Murray Gell-Mann

Disappointment to a noble soul is what cold water is to burning metal;
it strengthens, tempers, intensifies, but never destroys it.
– Eliza Tabor

One’s best success comes after their greatest disappointments.
– Henry Ward Beecher

The size of your success is measured by the strength of your desire;
the size of your dream;and how you handle disappointment along the way.
– Robert Kiyosaki

Quotes of the Week :: Choice in Life’s Struggles

When, at some point in our lives, we meet a real tragedy —which could happen to any one of us — we can react in two ways. Obviously, we can lose hope, let ourselves slip into discouragement, into alcohol, drugs, and unending sadness. Or else we can wake ourselves up, discover in ourselves an energy that was hidden there, and act with more clarity, more force.

-The Dalai Lama

Our greatest glory is not in never falling, but in getting up every time we do.
-Confucius

We all have a choice in life’s struggles… stay where you are or grow from it. Stay in the pit or get out. Stay in the dark or come into the light. Be alone or be with others. Be defeated or have hope. Be bitter or forgive. This week, make the choice to pull up your bootstraps and climb out of the pit.
Then surround yourself with beauty, life and love.
–susie lee