Run ‘em over with your Prius or hug ‘em tight? How to love everyone. (No sex involved)

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Let's just duel it out - winner keeps Brad.

“Inner Guide…I wholeheartedly welcome your guidance. I ask that you teach me to perceive everyone as equal, and to see everyone as love. Teach me love through every holy encounter.” Gabrielle Bernstein, May Cause Miracles

“You’re going to stop harassing Linda and allow her to do her work at her own pace,” I instructed the manager at the hospital.

“This is her workplace. She’s not going to be bullied by you or anyone else!”

The snarling manager who had it with me was on the phone, calling security to have me removed from his office and the hospital.

In my most inspiring and sacred job as a union organizer, I’ve had to get in the face of unruly managers plenty of times.

The people who steal your peace.

Many conversations have turned into shouting matches. Sometimes, the cops have shown up. The mutual feelings of animosity and anger were shared by all.

Not only in the workplace but every day of your life presents you with situations where you will be angry, frustrated or extremely annoyed with the people around you. 

You want to yank out her hair and strangle her. You want to pour a bucket of water on her lovely dress so she’s soaked, embarrassed and brought back to reality!

Not just your girl-friend but,

–       The rude clerk at the grocery store who refuses to give you a double coupon discount.

–       The hotel receptionist who insists on giving you a smoking room

–       Your co-worker who’s supposed to listen to your ideas but goes ahead and does whatever she pleases.

–       The obnoxious retail lady who shoo’s you off to the plus-sized dresses when you clearly don’t belong there.

–       The boy-friend who forgot your anniversary, birthday, Mother’s Day, boxing day, President’s Day and hey maybe, the murder-worthy day to forget – Valentine’s day.

Can you love the people who you’d rather run over with your Prius?

The ones who make you angry?

Frustrate you?

Judge you?

Cut you off in traffic? (I just cut someone off recently while driving – a nun of all people! A story for another day).

The people you get angry with daily and feel like beating up with your designer Alexander Mcqueen heels? Or run over with your Prius? Or want to throw over the bridge?

In my case, how do I come to love the people, the adversaries, who sometimes do horrible things to workers? How do I love them?

I know there’s a fine line between being a pushover and standing up for what you believe in but how I do I love the people I’m angry with?

How did Nelson Mandela survive prison to fight apartheid? Dolores Huerta endure strikes and fasts for workers? Wendy Davis stand up, without food or water, for 11 hours for her beliefs?

Leggo your Eggo Let go of your ego and chose love.

Sending out love makes you happier, reduces turmoil in your life and creates more harmony in the world. Loving others is also a way to celebrate the divinity in all people.

Gabrrielle Bernstein orders us to step back, put our hands behind our back, and reads us the Miranda rights. Well, she reads us our ego’s rights and how to incarcerate the pesky character.

“The intention of the ego is to maintain control over the perception that the other person is separate, through attack, judgment, jealousy, and so on,” she writes in her latest book, May Cause Miracles.

Gabby says that’s we’re protecting ourselves by thinking attack thoughts on others and by doing so, creating more attack. Yup, it’s a vicious cycle.

She pushes us to challenge our gargantuan egos which occupies our consciousness and radiate love instead.

The spiritual act of surrender releases you from the ego’s grip and opens up your consciousness to receive guidance. (Shift) the goal of the relationship from one in which you defend specialness and separation to one in which you experience oneness and wholeness.

Can you love more daily?  

To chose love more, you have to come to terms with your judgment and impressions of people. You have to notice what your default perception of people are.

Where does your mind go when you face rudeness, annoyance or arrogance?

Do you attack? Or let go and love?

Once you are aware, let me challenge you to love more.

Can you hold less grudges and forgive more trespasses against you?

Can you put yourself in another person’s shoes? Sympathize with them?

You can’t become a perfect human overnight. You’re going to get upset and angered by the countless transactions you have every day of your life. And want to put people in a neck brace. Don’t do that.

You’ve gotta use every opportunity to look at the situation with love. It’s a daily practice. Hell, it’s a minute by minute practice.

So, instead of feeling attacked, fearful or angry with someone, chose in that moment to love them.

The most improbable results manifest when you do this. I notice that when we treat the other person with love, the other person changes! Often, they respond more logically, kindly and with love themselves. It’s like a magic trick. Gabby would call it a miracle!

You can change the way someone behaves by treating them showering them with love. I’m not a woo-woo kind of guy who believes in tarot readings, divine signs and all this spiritual mumbo jumbo. What the &%#@…let me take that back.

That’s exactly the kind of guy I am but don’t allow that to undermine what I’m about to say.

Do this today:

1)    Confront your hatred, judgment and anger towards others. Acknowledge it and be aware of how you are responding to those closest around you. Not just in your personal life but everyone you interact with.

2)    Choose to react differently – chose love over fear. As Gabby suggests, set the intention of your relationship with the other person as one of finding peace and love, not attacking them.

Respond to every attack, judgment and negative perception of someone with Gabby’s mantra: “I am willing to see love instead of this.” When you’re lied to, frustrated, angry or upset by someone, chose to see love in the situation, instead of the ego-based thoughts.

3)    Chose love in every situation you’re wronged, challenged , rejected, hurt, misunderstood, labeled, you’re made fun of, talked about, lied to…

4)    Find more happiness, peace, love and joy in your life when you love someone you want to strangle.  Note how your internal world changes for the better. Notice how your external world is filled with more kindness, understanding and love.

How do you love someone who you makes you angry? Let me know in the comments below – one of you lucky comment-leaving souls will win a free copy of Gabby’s book, May Cause Miracles.

Photo credit: Radek Szuban

35 Comments

  1. Daily practice. Minute by minute practice. CONSCIOUS practice. Takes a lot of effort, this loving thing!

    Choose to react differently – that one definitely resonates with me. Be held accountable for your actions. Definitely.

    Don’t leave it as a story for another day! Tell us about the nun !

    – Razwana

    1. Ok, cut off the nun at the last minute! By accident, of course, as I was trying to make an exit off the freeway. I slowed down praying it wasn’t a nun – I’ve never even seen a nun on the road. I immediately started praying for forgiveness as a colleague, in the passenger seat, reminded me that I was forgiven already cause she’s a nun! I’m not so sure 🙂

  2. Very true Vishnu. I have been badly treated at work the last few years. Underpaid for my work etc and used to seethe with rage as was unable to confront my colleagues as ould not afford to move from the workplace right away. I then understood my inner rage was like drinking poison and hoping teh other person would die , as they sayy :>). I have gradually learnt to forgive ( comes a bit hard for me ) but this has definitely lifted a great weight off my shoulders. I have learnt to be grateful for what I have. I see many cancer patients in our practice and realsie that many people pray to have what I and my family already have. I have learnt to look at people I work with differently and see them more as people with their own problems and insecurities..health and money worries and realise that though they take hoem more pay, they have more worries etc also. My behaviour towards them has changed and as a result their behaviour towards me had changed alot too. As they say…..Change the way you look at things, and the things you look at will change. Very true. Or in a nutshell as Gandhi would say…`Be the change you want to see in the world.

    1. Murali – great story and thanks so much for sharing. I think you pretty much summed up this post – be the change you want to see in the world. It’s really amazing how when we change, the world around us changes! A magic trick or a miracle? Gabby’s book goes on to say that more miracles unfold once one change’s their perspective.

      Also, that’s great news how you’re able to extend empathy and understanding to your colleagues. Thanks for your visit and comment.

  3. Remind yourself every thought, is just that, it’s only a thought. And it’s a thought you created so if it doesn’t feel good, then feel the feeling, let it go and choose another thought to put in it’s place. The more we let go of what we don’t want (and who wants to feel crummy) the more room we have for love.

    It’s always a choice between love or fear. Choosing love sets us up for wonderful life experiences and less of those you mention above. Everybody wins.

    I’m with you Vishnu. 🙂

    1. Thanks for the message about the power of choosing thoughts, Elle. I think realizing that we can chose thoughts is a life-changing concept. I’m trying to choose love thoughts more in my life in every experience!

  4. Very entertaining post. Who knew you were so funny!?

    Whenever something gets a rise out of me, I try to remember to look at myself and look at why it hooked me. Whenever I feel a reaction, it is about me not about what happened or the other person.

    It find it helpful to always let my actions and responses be guided by “Be the change you want to see.” Works every time, in any situation. This allows me to choose love, compassion, forgiveness whenever possible. It’s always possible.

    1. Thanks Debbie – I’m trying! (with the humor:) lol

      Also, wonderful how you take a step back and become more self-aware. It’s not an easy practice and not something everyone can do but the fact that you’re doing means you’re likely inviting, and experiencing, more love, forgiveness and compassion in your life.

  5. What a wonderful post, Vishnu!
    As you probably already know, I named this year “LOVE” and vowed to consciously choose to love when faced with such situations as you’ve described here. Truly, what a difference this makes! You are so right – when we choose to love, our ego disappears (at least, for that time) and we begin to see with God’s eyes, not our own. Wish more people would try this approach . . .
    Blessings to you!

    1. HI Martha – yes, what a great practice to have all year and all life. It’s the most important practice, don’t you think? If we can view others with love and love in every situation, we are celebrating the divine! Thanks for continuing to be the love you want to see in the world:)

  6. Hmm. No sex? Alright! Just kidding!
    I love your continued reference to the Prius. It is a fabulous car!
    I have learned through experience and guidance from childhood up that love and kindness always rule. For my own good. And thereby, for others too. Any angry action does not benefit anyone. Being unforgiving screws up our own health. Now why would one choose self-sabotage? I always prefer to cool off when I get agitated with physical activity – say, vacuum my house or go for a brisk walk. It clears the head and puts things in perspective. Outdoors, all our problems look a lot smaller. And then, hatred is a lose-lose situation. Just not worth it.

    😀 I wondered where your post was going, but enjoyed the Prius ride!

    And I’d love to read Gabby’s book – yeah!

    1. Haha Vidya – the sex will be for a future post.

      I’m not sure why I get carried away with the Prius – maybe because so many of my friends drive one. And you NEVER have to fill up that car with gas – maybe monthly at most.

      You ask a great question – why would anyone choose self-sabotage? But people do, without realizing it. Hatred is such a lose-lose proposition and glad to hear you’re operating from a place of love.

      I’m going to have a random drawing of the book (no favorite’s) and will announce the winner soon:)

  7. Sometimes when I am angry with someone if I take a mental step back and see myself in them, or possibly recognize how I don’t want to act, but have done in the past, it helps me to choose love. I don’t want to be an angry person, yelling and hating. Being conscious of that helps me make better choices, not all of the time, but more and more.

    1. Thanks Wendy. If we could be in the state of love in all times, I think we’d be saints or realized souls who are likely to see love in every situation. But practice does help get us there:) Thanks for visiting.

  8. Hi Vishnu,

    I try to be laid back and let things roll past. Most of the time I can do it, maybe because I can also fall into the people pleasing category on occasion. There are times however that I do lose it. I have a technical issue right now and I have to take deep breathes to deal with it. Sometimes just fake being kind works too, until love can resurface. Practice your love and it will become a habit. Thanks!

    1. I think what’s really inspiring Cathy is how you and others here continue to take on the practice of being a more loving person in life. And your advice, of (fake) love til you make it is brilliant. Sometimes, people can really test our patience and our sanity so giving ourselves time for love to resurface is great.

  9. I think this is the second phase of the ‘Love your neighbor’ thing…

    When I took in this assignment of ‘Holy encounters,’ I was surprised to find out how “horrible” I am to other people in terms of relating. Perhaps, that’s why it was easier to just ‘shoo’ people away than continue ‘mingling.’ But I guess, the real challenge comes from those everyday experiences that we all have…my behavior was mirrored to me many times and it was purifying.

    I also think it’s a conscious effort to find God in everybody esp. to those I find hateful…but I agree that we always have a choice. And to keep on choosing ‘love’ (without sex involved) lol… well, I rely on God’s mercy and grace on that.

    Finale ~ I love what Gabrielle wrote on the shifting the goals of relationship. Thanks for sharing this Vishnu. God bless.

    1. Hey Melissa – thanks for sharing your reflections and experiences. Our behavior is indeed like a mirror – like the way you put that. So, have you stopped shooing and started mingling:) Sounds like it! Yes, God’s mercy and grace can give us the strength to find love in every situation.

      An important book by Gabby which resonates with many of the spiritual and religious texts in the world.

  10. I agree with Rawana about the daily practice of maintaining consciousness. One situation that I am mindful about is ” road rage”. Traffic has gotten busier over the years and you see impatient drivers and hear cars honking frequently.

    I try to maintain peace and calmness when I drive. Mostly, I am not in a hurry, so I give way as much as I can. For the driver who cuts into my lane and others, I send him or her a prayer of wellness.

    1. Thanks Evelyn for your comment and for your prayer of wellness:) for me! I hope the nun sent me love and wellness as well:)

  11. Vishnu, It’s a challenge, isn’t it! I send them love, a resolution to their problem, a peaceful day (finding their destination, already!! lol). Sometimes when I am really desperate I send them one of my angels. And sometimes I just have a small tirade to myself and then force myself to relax, remembering all of the times that a delay got me exactly where I needed to be, in exactly the right second, and I remind myself that we are all always exactly where we are supposed to be. Usually I have plenty of time and so I don’t stress, but now that my schedule is changing I find I must constantly remind myself of exactly what you just said 🙂

    1. hi Julie – thanks for sharing your tips:) And a great one is to be reminded that circumstances happen and people may do things which bring us to where we need to be. So stress just adds to our own anxiety and does very little to solve the problem.

  12. I become Curious and talk in a professional mode. There is no need to be upset… but it took me tons of training to react so. Probably it would be much better to just transform some habits or at least repeat some mantras.

    1. Good one Mat – asking questions, becoming curious and trying to understand the other person are good tips. Also a lifetime practice to reacting differently. Taking a deep breath, a silent prayer or chanting a mantra are also good ways of catching our breath and not allowing anger to takeover.

  13. Hey Vishnu,

    Very funny post. Just about to go onto a conference call that may become adversarial – your posts always have something timely about them for me- any ideas why? 🙂 Will give these ideas a try.

    1. The universe works like that sometimes Keith. Glad to see you here. Hope to see more of you soon. And I hope the conference wasn’t too adversarial:)

  14. 1. I forgot how awesome “leggo my eggo” really is. Thank you.

    2. This is great. I think I shall pass around my office. It’s important to love one another. Throughout my career, I’ve worked in high-stress environments. Stress brings out the worst in people! I have witnessed the most horrific backstabbing and gossip. Many times, I have wanted to chuck a pen across a conference room table. 🙂 Instead, I have learned patience by reminding myself of two things: 1.) We are all God’s children and 2.) Something has happened to this person to make them behave the way he/she does. Something has driven their hurtful or dishonest actions. Insecurities? Trust issues? Personal problems? When I remind myself that they, too, are struggling, it gives me patience.

    Thanks for the reminder to love more daily.

    1. hey Jody Lamb – thanks for these excellent additions! If we can see the universality in all ourselves, we will definitely start treating each other better. And I believe empathy or putting ourselves in someone else’s shoes or even thinking that they may have traveled a certain journey which makes them behave a certain way can help us give us perspective on the actions of others.

      I’m glad you use these tips – a couple more I can add to the toolbox of loving everyone more and more often.

  15. Hi Vishnu,

    Wonderful post, indeed!

    Indeed choosing love over anger, frustration, hate etc is very powerful. One variant which I like to use, especially for those people who can be the most difficult to deal with (and those which a lot of people don’t even try to undertstand) is to look for the good in such people. There will always be something good, which we can focus on as a way to develop trust and get to know these individuals.

    Thank you.

    1. Hey Hiten – yes, focusing on the good is a good way to deal with difficult people. Everyone has good and redeeming qualities in them – as you say, we just have to look for it. Thanks!

  16. “The most improbable results manifest when you do this. I notice that when we treat the other person with love, the other person changes! ” <—I resonate so much with these statements, and not because I have used this strategy, but because it has been used on me and worked. I firmly believe that kindness is the best defense AND offense. Nothing can withstand continued kindness; change is inevitable. It's an incredible phenomenon.

    But knowing this and putting it into practice are two very different things. To be honest, I am not good at it. I definitely use prayer and leave it in God's hands. I explain what I would like to happen but how I just don't think I can be loving and ask for help. Incredibly enough, this also works. Seriously. For proof, just ask Bjorn. 😉

    1. Yes J!! Kindness is the best defense and offense. Awesome quote! Sometimes, we do have to put it in God’s hands. When we don’t know how to respond or have the ability to respond at the moment, calling on G is therapeutic and allows Him to work in our lives.

      Also, you’re right – knowing it and putting it to practice are two different things but if we can try or at least intend to put it into practice, that’s at least a start:) Only way to get there is keep practicing or at least, starting:)

  17. I like this post a lot V.

    I think the simpler we can make things the more powerful they become. It sounds like you are basically saying “choose love.” Which sounds really simple and I guess it is. But it’s not easy to do. I guess simple doesn’t necessarily equate with easy.

    I think it’s challenging when we are faced with situations where are character is being tested. Anyone can find love when life is all nice and dandy. But it’s when we are in the midst of a battle that finding love becomes a challenge. I don’t really talk about love at my blog – well maybe love of dreams and beating up people :). I think that’s one of the reasons I like your blog… It feels a lot nicer than mine :).

    1. Thanks for your input Izzy! Choosing love is easier said than done but doesn’t mean we can’t keep striving for it. And you’ve said you love me plenty of times. LOL

      You don’t talk about love exactly on your blog but you do talk about following your dreams and being true to yourself, which is in a way love. Gotta love yourself first before being able to love others and that’s why I’m a fan!

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