Recently, I started to go back to meditation classes from my wedding planning frenzy hiatus. The topic last week was about compassion and extending compassion to strangers and enemies. Of course it is easy to be compassionate towards our friends and loved ones, but in this class our teacher shed light on treating everyone like a friend. This idea of opening up friendships and not creating tiers for people in our lives has been at the forefront of my mind for a while now. I have been thinking a lot about friendships over the years and how the older I get, the more my friendships evolve. I think when I was younger, I would tier my friends out, now I really genuinely feel like I can have strong feelings of kinship towards people I just met. In addition to these thoughts, for the past year I have been asking myself, “How do I create more meaningful connections to people?” in conjunction with “How do I distance myself from toxic people?”
I’ve learned, the answer to that question is to treat everyone with compassion and an openness that you normally would a friend. It’s obvious that by treating strangers or even coworkers with a little extra kindness will give everyone feel-good feelings. This week, I’ve been working on asking other people about themselves and sharing more about myself to create an openness that I am normally too shy to.
So, how does that help me with toxic people? Well, I’ve learned toxic people react to people’s kindness in two ways. Most toxic people do not like other people’s’ happiness and generally like to complain about other people. So, the more I treat these individuals with the hopes that they reach a sense of contentedness and inner peace (happiness), the more they distance themselves from any real progress from that happiness. The second way they respond (which is ideal), is they see the light and make small changes towards happiness. So, either way I am fighting negativity with positivity and in a sense, positivity wins in both situations.
I find the more time I create opportunities to create a meaningful relationship with myself, the more meaningful my relationships with others has become. I’ll keep updating as meditation class thoughts come up. I also should post about my trip to Bali soon.