Vijitha Sebastian Adappoor
We are always told to be content and grateful for what we have, but we find ourselves focusing on what’s wrong. Most of us are zero in on someone else’s imperfections – how they look, behave or live. We always boast about being kind and gentle, the quality that we feel is ingrained within us. Doesn’t the above act pull us away from it?
Developing compassion for others builds our perspective more than anything else. It is the recognition that other people’s problems, their pain and frustrations are as real as our own. Compassion develops our sense of gratitude by taking our attention off from all the little things that most of us have learned to take too seriously. It involves the willingness to put our self in someone else’s shoes and imagine what it is like to be in someone else’s predicament.
For many of us, our lives are filled with responsibilities and at the same time we ought to learn the art of relaxing. We hustle someone along because we do not find him working at the same pace as us but a little patience will help us to realize that he/she is slow because of his/her inability to grasp things quickly. Once, we were asked to feed the students’ data into the computer. A colleague of mine approached me for help and as we got into the job, I found myself getting annoyed at a very small issue. The person I was helping was taking a long time to read out the data. My impatience was evident in the tone in which I was communicating with her. Finally, my younger colleague realized my annoyance and said that she could not read the names fast in English as she was used to the vernacular language. I hung my head in shame for not realizing it. We easily get frustrated by over-reacting and losing sight of the real problem.
On many occasions, while discussing in a group, we are not allowed to finish all that we have to say, as we are interrupted by others. On such occasions, we become a little nervous and annoyed. We are under tremendous pressure trying to figure out the thought process of the interrupter and at the same time continue and finish our own train of thoughts. These two instances made me realize that as soon as we observe the imperfections in those around us, they should be condoned in a jiffy. Otherwise, our mind tends to blow it beyond repair. We can always train ourselves to relax and accept these small things in each other. In the first case, I was the one who got irritated but the second case made me realize how a person feels when he/she is at the receiving end.
It is indeed enjoyable when we learn to share the joy of someone else’s glory. Instead of belittling the incapability in others, give them time to double up their energies and then haul them over to your pace. My superior relegated a few responsibilities to my friend who had to race literally with the senior as he wanted many things to be attended to at the same time. The work of conducting examinations calls for real grit especially for a first timer. The senior who was quite experienced wanted to plug all the loopholes that were brought to his notice earlier but the same was not foreseen by my friend. On her second stint, she mastered the art and there were no regrets at all. Had the senior considered her a misfit, due to her imperfections, she would not have succeeded in proving her mettle.
The people with whom we communicate will feel much more relaxed around us, when they feel they are being listened to. It will also improve our interaction with other people. When we don’t rush through our work or any kind of conversation, we will surely enjoy them and that will also make us more focused and creative in our thinking.
Advent is here for us to celebrate all the beautiful things that Jesus, our lord, taught us and helped us to incorporate in our life. The amount of happiness that precedes the birth of our Lord, during this season, is immeasurable. All of us eagerly wait for the season, as it creates vibrancy and the feel continues to be with us all through. As we tune ourselves to the divine rhythm, it connects us spiritually and pushes us in a positive direction to feel the power of His love. The best way to love others is to help them reveal the greatest version of themselves. Love pervades all that Jesus taught us, leading us to understand that, to be good, we need not be perfect.