Point of View
I walked towards my seat at the cafe with my head held high. You see I called him for a coffee to apologize but more importantly to give the reasons as to why I felt and acted the way I did. With my Starbucks Caramel Macchiato in hand, I confidently began to share the reason for this coffee invite. I needed to check people off a list whom I felt I had relationship tensions with, because this was “the thing” holding me back from forward momentum in my life.
So here it goes with the first person to be crossed off the list, my gateway to being free and lighter. So, with poise and intelligence I began explaining my feelings and emotions to this past situation that had gone unresolved. Then I paused and asked a question I didn't plan at all, “how did you feel?” But what I was totally blindsided by, was that it was his side of the story which I was totally oblivious to. Was this a bad episode of the Flash? How could that be? Was he in a “parallel universe” when the situation occurred, because I remember him being right there, very aware of everything he said and did, but as I sat and listened to his heart on the issue, I was dumb founded, and to tell you the truth, truly saddened by his “misinterpretation” of my heart or actions.
Can two people approach the same situation and both of them walk away with two totally different viewpoints? With totally two different pages or interpretations??!!
If we had told our stories to separate individuals, we would have both been “right” to take the stubborn stance we did. But here we were, and as I listened I was so grieved because I didn't realize how hurt he was, and if I had never taken the time to listen, I mean really LISTEN not for a rebuttal or to show him where he was wrong, nothing would have truly be resolved even after an apology. But truly just listening from the heart to how he felt or interpreted the situation, helped me understand his Point of View and now I could ask the right questions.
I realized right at that moment, I had faced about 3 situations that week where I felt people had totally been on another page but I hadn't stopped to ask what’s your POINT OF VIEW on this matter, without overloading my mind with a flood of emotions towards the issue. When someone knows they can be vulnerable with you, without your judgement you can start asking the real questions that were underlying the problem in the first place, and get down to the root bringing lasting change and clarity. Could you be the block to true healing in your relationship?
We live in a culture where it’s excused or even praised to be “in your own head”, and we never take the time to remove our idea or interpretation out way and allow the other person to share their heart. But now more than any other time I think these moments are needed. Let's move forward in these times where anxiety, stress, depression and loneliness is on the rise by being vulnerable enough with people and say the hard things, like this is how I felt when you did that, this is how I interpreted it.
More than not there will be reconciliation and restoration of relationships, rather than sweeping things under the carpet to be dealt with at a later stage when a volcano of emotions will erupt. Emotional maturity demands us to surpass putting ourselves in someone else’s shoes, because that is still based on our own experiences and knowledge “Your Point Of View”. Stop justifying yourself, stop amplifying the situation in your mind and START listening.
So, my advice after this week: Take down the wall by being a safe space for someone to voice themselves, and ask the question. What’s your Point Of View?
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