The other day I was driving and came to a 4-way stop sign. I got there first and had the right away, but this dude rolled right through and cut me off. Obviously, it got me fired up. Who does he think he is? This a$$ of all a$$es. He even looked like a d-bag with his gelled hair and sunglasses and car with a loud muffler. Don’t even get me started.
Less than 30 seconds later – like before I had the chance to flip him off or spout some profanities (out loud) – he made a left turn into the hospital parking lot. Oh. God. I immediately felt terrible for my thoughts. For judging when I didn’t know the circumstances. What if his wife was going into labor? Or his mother was on her death bed?
I mean, that could be total bull and maybe he really was a d-bag, but, the point is, you just never know. And that’s why I (we) shouldn’t cast stones.
Why am I sharing this?
This past Lent, I figured I’d do something meaningful instead of giving up something like gum (don’t chew) or alcohol (rarely drink) or cable (don’t even have). I picked up a copy of Gabby Bernstein’s May Cause Miracles, a 6-week guided practice with twice daily exercises that include prayers, mantras, meditations, and small assignments.
After the first week, a few things were glaringly obvious.
- I care too much about what other people think of me
- It’s hard for me to forgive
- I judge others viciously
All of the above were/are holding me back from having my best life. It’s sad that I’ve allowed it, but it’s more important to acknowledge and address it.
As Rachel Hollis so eloquently reinforced, “Someone else’s opinion of you is NONE of your business.” Powerful. Profound. And you know what? It’s so true. If I’m okay with me, others should be too. If they aren’t, that’s on them. The same goes for you. Want to live your best life? Just do you.
When it comes to forgiveness, I (we) have to realize that not everyone is going to be sorry for the things they’ve said or done. Maybe because they really don’t care about our feelings. Or maybe, just maybe, because they don’t know they’ve wronged us. It’s so hard, but it’s worth it to let go of things that are out of our control.
And then there’s judging. Society makes it so easy for us to judge others. Look at the tabloids, the news, celebrity gossip. We slut shame and call people names, accuse women of being bad moms and men of being deadbeat dads, we say he’s too fat or she’s too ambitious. The. List. Goes. On.
The fact is, there will always be judgment in the world. There will always be people on the wrong path. There will be hatred and evil and sorrow. But we can do our part and be a little kinder with our thoughts, words, and actions. Because every act of kindness compounds into something big. Together, we can create change.
One last note…
To me, spiritual wellness is even more important than physical. You can lift all the weights and run all the miles, but if you don’t get your mind right – you’re f*cked.
Below are the personal development books* I’ve read in the last six weeks. They’ve been nothing short of inspiring. Hopefully they’ll be of interest to you too!
- May Cause Miracles by Gabby Bernstein
- You Do You & Calm the F*ck Down by Sarah Knight
- Girl, Stop Apologizing by Rachel Hollis
- Holy Shift! (daily readings) by Robert Holden, Ph.D.
Current Read: Judgement Detox by Gabby Bernstein.
Peace, Love, Zen
*Links are not affiliate and I will not earn a commission on any purchases made. I usually read reviews on Amazon, Goodreads, etc. and then borrow from my local library – it’s greener and way more economical for the number of books I read annually.