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16th October 2016
Three young boys ride past on bikes. One takes hands off handle bars.
“I can do that too!” yells the second.
This put me in mind of the opening scenes of The Abundance Code where young children are compared with each other – by their teacher – in the primary school classroom, and scorned and told they’ll grow up to be nothing unless they conform, and effectively compete with each other. It then shows these same children playing musical chairs at a party, where they become anxious and start to push each other out the way to get the last chairs so they can win the prize.
It also put me in mind of an adult conversation I was a part of a few weeks ago when one participant was trying to tell a story, share some feelings and make a point of something only to be continually interrupted and spoken over by one of the other participants, who took practically every component of the story and applied it to her own life. In her efforts to demonstrate her own experiences and to prove herself in some way, the second participant was also comparing and competing, unable to simply listen to and genuinely acknowledge the story of the first participant.
In our efforts to validate our own self worth and compare ourselves with our external world, we tend not to look inside ourselves to allow others the silence and space they deserve (and possibly need) as they attempt to tell us a story; nor do we stop to offer words of encouragement, love, congratulations, empathy and joy to share with others as they cycle with no hands, or try to share a personal experience with us as often as we might.
We are brought up to compare and compete. We are continually trying to outdo each other in experiences, abilities and what we know. At a world-wide level we’re at war all over the place in our efforts to try and ‘win’. We all too rarely just smile our support, or offer “go you!” or “well done” or “I hear you sister” or similar words of encouragement or understanding to another. All too very often everything comes back to how it is for us.
This week I challenge you to look inside and allow others the limelight or to ‘win’. Choose to be generous with your word and don’t stop to think about how something applies to or affects you. Consciously pay attention to what you say – or maybe don’t need to say – as you go through your days. Really listen to others, and offer some genuine words of encouragement or empathy. Skip the judgements, comparisons, competing and self-absorbance and offer congratulations, a hug, a smile, a round of applause.
It will build your own sense of empowerment and self esteem – and it will knock them down with a feather and make their day. ♥