10501827_665452266870225_1181949207102080452_nWhen I participated in seminars with Landmark Education, the Landmark Forum was often about helping us own up to our stuff.

One powerful practice was truly getting our impact on someone else. Like *really* get over in their world + get how who you’re being impacts them.

When I did this, I actually did get the ways in which I acted like a jerk to people in my life, and how it was for them.

When I “got” them and how my choices really landed over in their world, I was able to transform those relationships, all from acknowledging: “Hey! I can be a real jerk sometimes!”

It seems the more I share myself vulnerably, the more other people think it’s their right to offer me unsolicited advice, without pausing to get their impact.

When I recently posted an article about my pregnancy, one woman commented to me, in a nutshell: not everyone can have what you’re having, so this is just a reminder to have some humility.

Great. Now I feel like crap. Thanks, lady.

Now, on her behalf, I can see where she’s coming from. It’s true, obvious and totally the case for every being on the planet, that we’re all not going to have what someone else is having. We’re having our own journey and experiences. I get it.

I know that not every woman can intend and become pregnant. I know some women over 35 can’t conceive. I don’t live in a hole.

The fact that this person feels the need to state this, like I need a big ole slice of humble pie, is concerning to me.

Now, in a perfect world, I’m just not going to take it personally and move on. I guess if I’m going to keep sharing myself, I better just toughen up my skin.

And yet, I can’t help but get my panties in twitch about these kind of comments. What’s with people? 

Here’s why:

I don’t actually need you to serve me your advice. If I asked for it, or if I know you, or paid you for it, or clicked on your blog…sure- give it up. Otherwise, follow the golden rule. If you don’t have anything nice to say, just don’t say anything at all!

I do not EVER go around on social media and judge people, or serve them up my advice in a way that is mean, rude, or shaming.

What this person actually is saying to me is “Hey! not everyone has what you have, so pipe down over there!”

Is that really the way the world works? If someone, somewhere, doesn’t have the ability to eat, or can’t afford food, I should quit eating?

If someone can’t have children, then I shouldn’t celebrate having mine?

If someone, somewhere, doesn’t have money, I should give mine all away?

Like that’s really your advice? Not everyone has your experience, so swallow some humble pie?

I was surprised. I am often surprised by the people I meet who act shitty.

Here are some basic rules I think it’d be great if we all followed:

  • Assume positive intent.
  • If you don’t have anything nice to say, don’t say anything at all.
  • Don’t give unsolicited advice.
  • When in doubt about what you’re about to say (or type), ask yourself:

Is this kind?

Is this necessarry?

Is it true?

When I share myself openly on my blog, it’s full of intention to be real, vulnerable, and open. It’s about being creative, writing, sharing my heart and journey, and connecting with you. You don’t have to be here, click on this, or read it.

If you do, I ask that you open your heart. Soften. Let it in. Take what you like and ditch the rest. Don’t feel like I’m some mis-guided girl who needs you to admonish me, or make sure I see all sides, or who needs a reminder that for some people, somewhere, life sucks.

I know, ok? I live on the same planet you do. Chances are, I’m aware of all sides, just like you. 

Assume that I’m celebrating and sharing with the highest intent.

I know I’m likely preaching to the choir here, but please- please- quit saying rude, shaming, or confrontational things to people who are opening their hearts, sharing their stories, and being vulnerable, okay?

Maybe it’s time to own up to that we can act like a real jerk sometimes?

What would it take for us to praise one another, love one another, accept one another, and stop feeling like we have to police each other? Judgment doesn’t make a friend, acceptance and love do.

And if we do act like big jerks, how ’bout we just own up and say sorry?

Let’s not forget, that for those of us doing our work, opening up our awareness and spiritual centers, we are quite sensitive. I’ve always been a highly sensitive being, and when I share personal things about my life with you, I’m opening up my heart.

When you, or someone, isn’t loving, supportive, gentle, or kind, it hurts! That’s just the truth of it. So, for the love of God, don’t be harsh to people and when you do, admit that you can be a real jerk sometimes!

I think Ani DiFranco said it best: Just give up, and admit you’re an asshole. You’d be in some good company, and I think you’ll find that your friends will forgive you, or maybe…I’m just speaking for me.

If you’ve never listened to that song, give it a click. It’s good. And don’t take my word for it, give it a try. Next time you’re in a conflict, get over in that person’s world + “try on” how your way of being might be impacting them, then own it + say sorry. You’ll be amazed at the healing that can provide.

All my love,

Rachel