Empathy, not excuses

What I find frustrating is when someone goes through one of their stories they’ve shared many times before to explain (excuse) what happened. That story has become their past, present, and future. Once it’s fully retold, the teller often uses their energy to vent their frustrations or by name-calling themselves, others, or the situation. They have become more concerned about averting responsibility than empathizing any level of injury they may be causing others. They have chosen to believe that their stories are what people want to hear when in reality, what others really want to know is what they will do about it, or what can happen, from here on forward.

The past informs us, but it isn’t meant to become our story. While it might give us insight into, and empathy for the victim storyteller the first time around, it does very little to make the listener whole. The past is best used to learn about ourselves so that we can use those insights to break cycles; to identify what we want to carry forward, what we want to change, and what we need to learn. When we carry forward our stories as excuses, we might ask ourselves why we are afraid of taking responsibility for our lives.
The present moment is our moment, and it’s where the magic, and the true relationships are at. Let’s not take that away from ourselves or from each other. When we take responsibility for showing up in the present instead of schlepping the weight of the past with us, we can co-create. If an apology is called for, look for ways to communicate empathy in that apology, i.e. I’m sorry I kept you waiting. versus I’m sorry I’m late, traffic was horrible. Can you feel the difference in energy?
The future becomes the present, and what it holds relies on in which of the 3 we dwell.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s