“Wrong does not cease to be wrong because the majority share in it.” Tolstoy
It’s a long standing joke between my best friend and I that he likes to be right, to the point where on the very rare occasions where I have been able to prove him wrong I’ll make a big deal and laugh at him. This is all done in jest – I’ve known him since I was 19 years old and we have a good enough relationship to be able to say what we feel without fear of offending each other. We generally seem to share the same beliefs and moral code, so it’s rare that we totally disagree on a subject. However, does it mean that because we share these ideals we are ‘right’ in what we believe?
What I have discovered is that the issue of being ‘right’ in our opinions, however, can sometimes be a dangerous thing. Each person, and subsequently their minds, are unique, and this means that each individual has a different perception of the reality of a situation. Our minds are an interpretation of ourselves, our experiences and our surroundings.
I’ve always believed that I am quite open minded when listening to other’s opinions on lots of different subjects (often resulting in some interesting conversations) without judgement, but I stubbornly took a rather dogmatic approach to my own. To justify myself, I used the premise that I involuntarily felt the way I did about something or someone, and should be allowed the right to do so. Ultimately, regardless of others attempts to offer alternative perspectives on the situation, I thought I was right, and that was all that mattered.
Unfortunately, I frequently found that the beliefs that I continued to remain attached to were the negative ones that allowed me to approach certain situations in a state of anger and frustration. When I have been truly hurt, something inside me switches off emotionally and I’ve been a victim of my own mind (and consequently have played the victim) for a long time. I haven’t done it consciously, but upon reflection I think I may have almost been looking for justification and understanding from those around me about my feelings, and have been left with almost a sense of abandonment on occasion when I haven’t received it.
In general, I like my life. I have a good relationship with The Bloke and my mother, lots of good friends, a well paid job, nice colleagues, a cosy home and two cats. While money is a little tighter than it used to be, I don’t want for anything. I have been lucky to have experienced lots of wonderful things and visited places I used to only dream of as a child. I have nothing to complain about, yet, somehow, despite the many ways in which I attempted to adopt a different approach, my mindset was steadfast in the way I regarded certain situations to be. I was right, they were wrong.
A little while ago, I decided that being right is not important. I don’t want to live like that anymore. I don’t want to say what I think other people want to hear to pacify them and avoid lectures. I don’t wish to put on a smile and go through the motions just to put a brave face on it. While I cannot change what has happened, I want to be able to let go and move on. I don’t want to be right, I want to be happy.
As with any change, it’s going to take a little bit of time, but I’m hoping that one small step at a time will lead me on the journey I wish to travel…
What about you? How have you moved on from things that have hurt you in the past?
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