Happy Sunday All
This week I have been loving my connection with family. Now when I say family we have two. We have those we were born into and the family that we choose as we go through life. This week the clear message has been that our families are ‘Our University of Life.’
Now this post will be quickie as I have a family christening to attend later this morning. Another lovely opportunity to learn and I’m buzzed. Family is important to me, but the family connection and dynamic I’ve envisaged most of my life hasn’t always been present. This is perhaps true for many of you?
I’m sure we all have an ideal (sometimes one often given to us by the media and books) and idealised view of how we’d like our mother, father or siblings to be and behave, how we’d like to feel within the bosom of the family when we come together, but for some we spend our time nonplussed: ‘why this?’ and ‘why that?’
As you may have noticed, I am a reflector. An observer. I have always asked why this and why that both of myself and others and what I’ve come to realise about family is that it truly is the best learning environment for those of us who are seekers & questioner.
Reflections & Mirrors
We all (well many of us do) have that one brother, sister, cousin, aunt or uncle; maybe it’s your mother or father, but there is often one person in you immediate or extended family that gives you that ‘NYJA’ feeling. Who twist up your insides and make you cross or annoyed, piqued or frustrated, yet when it happens you decide every time it’s not worth it and instead of asserting yourself you stay cross and smother the feeling.
In this circumstance you need to consider if it actually is THEY that are the issue or is it YOU?
You see, it’s not the other person and their actions where the learning comes from, but our reaction to it!
When those resentful feelings occur or those critical thoughts they mean one of two things
- This person is reflecting a trait within you that you are not dealing with
- Or they are reflecting a quality or trait that you can think about and choose not clear or reject?
I would suggest that if you have the ‘njya’ feeling when you meet or spend time in the company of the other person and you’re feeling negative in some way about them and or their behaviour/attitude then it’s more likely that the family university is showing you a quality within you need to deal with. “But I’m not like that!” I hear you scream,
…but perhaps it’s not in the way you think
You have one person who is rather quick to take offence and react or overreact to family situations. They maybe sulk and snap at everyone blaming and complaining or maybe they explode and terrify the gathering through intimidation. You find this really annoying and it ‘gets under your skin’ every time.
This does not mean you are like them, however, such a powerful reaction in you indicates that perhaps there is some unresolved anger within YOU that you need to deal with?
They are mirroring this back to you.
In the same situation your sister or brother or cousin or whoever has a very different reaction as you complain to them (stating how shocking so and so is being and how can they do this and etc., etc). They are much calmer than you more philosophical in their response than you are, saying ‘Or poor so and so, it’s so hard for them,’ or something similar. You find this even more irritating because you wanted them to support and agree with you and our feelings about the other person. How can they condone this when Mr/Ms Angry is terrorising the family?
Ying & Yang
The two reactions to the same situation illustrate the point I’m making.
Their reaction is calm and reflective. They see the angry family member as having qualities they have rejected, never had and continue to reject or have dealt with in a healthy way. They decided some time ago, somewhere in their subconscious that a violent or aggressive expression of anger is not something that they have within them or choose to have, so it’s simply something they can see and let go; they can objectively see it and sympathise with the pain that is nearly always the root of anger and angry outbursts.
Your reaction, because it creates a physical response within you is reflecting that you either haven’t dealt with your own anger or that you’re ignoring it, pretending you’re ‘not an angry person.’ and denying yourself a healthy expression of the anger we all must experience at some point.
- A conscious acknowledgment or a rejection.
- An acceptance or blind spot
In the family university of life our children are often our biggest, most painful or most joyous lessons. Many texts I have read, say the energy and personalities of our children often show the energy and nature of the relationship between the parents at the time of their conception.
Similarly, as they grow, they reflect and mirror characteristics and qualities within yourself to look at and resolve.
When you observe your children what do their character and behaviours say about your relationship with your spouse or if you’re a single parent about your relationship with yourself? Your reaction to them will tell you.
- Do you Love their characteristics and support them – are they mirroring the ‘good’ in you?
- Do you resent some particular trait and as such are they mirroring something you need to deal with within yourself?
- Or are they illustrating something you are ‘blind’ to and failing to acknowledge exists within you? If you realise you have this ‘flaw’ or characteristic, how will you then choose to ‘be’ in regard to it? Resentful meaning it’s not resolved or Accepting and loving yourself regardless but aware of it and working with and through it?
Well, it’s time for me to say ‘adieu’ and hope that today’s message has given you food for thought, but more importantly, shed light on why we react the way that we do.
When we observe our reaction(s) to the behaviours of our family, children and friends, when we sit up straight and pay attention in lectures provided by The Family University of life we are given opportunities, another day and another chance to ‘Choose who we want to be!’