Sh** Happens…

images-1I had rather an unpleasant encounter this week which left me reeling, or is that thrashing, in another person’s venom.

I sent out a blanket invitation to ‘like’ my writer Facebook page, and hovered over the button before pressing it, nervous about what I was about to do.

All those negative thoughts bubbled up – you know, the ones that keep us small?

I don’t want to intrude.

They’ll think I’m a nuisance.

They won’t be interested.

They might laugh.

They’ll think I’m lame…

 

There were more, but you get the picture.  I let them bubble for a while and then pressed send.  When you’re going for your dream you have to be brave sometimes.

‘What’s the worst that can happen?’ I reasoned.

Well, I was mortified when I got a very unpleasant message.  They were very angry and let me know about it, made references I found baffling, but it was clear they felt I had done them a great injustice in the past.  To their credit they did wish me well with the book.

I apologized, explained it was a blanket invite and wished them well in return.  I wanted to ask about the references, but they were so angry I didn’t think it would be beneficial.

‘Best to wait until they’ve calmed down,’ I thought.  I’ll drop them a line in a day or two to see if I can make amends, or clear up the misunderstanding.

A second message asked me to remove them from my contacts, so that door closed.

I was left with a great swirl of emotion, confused, upset and hurt.

It isn’t a pleasant feeling, knowing you’ve made an enemy, but more important knowing that, intentionally or not, you have clearly said, or done, something to hurt another.

What makes it worse in these cases, is the not knowing.  You can’t apologise, or make amends, if indeed an amends is possible.

I can’t, I’m unable to contact them and I doubt they’d be happy to hear from me.  So, how to fix something when you don’t know what it is, and you can’t contact that person to resolve it or perhaps it is something you’ve done in the past and you are no longer in touch with that person?

How to redress the balance?  How to resolve this and find peace?

I meditated and came up with these three steps which I thought I’d share in case they helped you in similar circumstances:

1. We are the sum of all our actions.

Undoubtably we will make mistakes, hurt and upset people, cock up and generally make blunders.  It’s inevitable, we’re human, and it’s important to fix those where we can.  However sometimes, due to circumstances or the scale of the mistake, we can’t.  Then it is equally important to put our mistake into perspective, and recognize that it is the overall impact of us and our actions throughout our lives that’s important, not just the few.

2. Compassion

When we talk about compassion we automatically think of being compassionate and forgiving others, but it’s equally important to be compassionate and forgive ourselves.

3. Take Action

Pay the ‘amends’ forward.  Put some positive action out to make amends.  Volunteer, help a friend or neighbor, go that extra mile for someone, do something, anything, that lifts someone’s spirit, cheers someone up, removes a burden, if only for a short while.  Do whatever it takes for you to feel you have redressed the balance.

So, my burden has been lifted.  I am sorry that I’ve both hurt someone and been unable to make it up to them, but I have found some peace and solace in knowing that, by helping someone else, I’ve redressed the universal balance and made the world a better place.

Well..until I cock up again!

Picture from elizabethtrutwin.org

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About me

Allison Agius lives in the North East of England with her husband.  They have five children between them. 

When she’s not working or writing she spends her time riding her Honda Hornet (in the summer), running (in the summer) and eating chocolate!