WHAT BELIEFS HAVE YOU ADOPTED FROM OTHER PEOPLE THAT DON’T SERVE YOU NOW?
I come from a long line of judgmental people who are critical of family, friends and strangers alike – everyone is fair game. Strike first and scorekeeping is the norm. They comment on and feel superior to those who “earned” gossip and ridicule. Add in a glass of wine and it amplifies.
It became clear to me that this behaviour comes from an unfortunate sense that their own lives are lacking. Deficient in adequate amounts of love, confidence, happiness, career satisfaction, money in the bank. These are highly intelligent people who have chosen to live a life of gossip and casual cruelty.
It always made me uncomfortable but there were a few occasions, I’m ashamed to admit, that I was perfectly able to participate when the opportunity arose for me to so. I often couched the cruelty in humour – sarcasm – but it came from a place of embarrassment and inadequacy. It happened less and less over the years, as I put distance between myself and those influencers of my youth, but on those occasions when I felt cornered and attacked by the same kind of people I could play with the best of them, or the worst, as it were. I had learned from masters.
I’ve done a lot of growing up since the last time I felt the need to play dirty. I don’t participate in conversations about people unless it is to praise their accomplishments, recognize positive actions, or acknowledge good character.
My goodness, it drives certain people bonkers, but those who choose to join me in praise, I know are my people. The rest? I don’t even engage.