Other People’s Choices

Sometimes people make choices which you might not agree with.  Maybe they choose the wrong romantic partners, or keep an awful diet, or keep oversleeping for their job, or need to post everything about their private life on public web sites.  Whatever the case may be, it is very interesting how this can affect us.  Sometimes we let it drive us crazy until we say something.  Sometimes we just let it torture us while we stay silent.  Maybe we approach the topic with the intent to help, but it never seems to work out that way.

Whenever you find yourself in a situation like this where someone else’s choices are bothering you, remember a few things.  First, you are seeing everything from your context.  Everyone has a different decision process, and while it may look like a very bad decision from your side, it absolutely may not be from theirs.  I remember when I first started eating healthy, the book I followed suggested one cheat meal per week, where anything you want to eat is fair game.  Anyone who saw me at the drive-thru likely would have cringed, but despite that I lost 35 pounds in 4 months, and ran a marathon a few months after that.  

Second, remember everybody is in process.  Very few behaviors change simply because someone says to do so.  To truly have a transformation, people need to see the effects of their behavior and make a decision themselves to change it.  Coaches are professionals at helping people see these effects which is one reason coaching is so effective, but unfortunately this can’t be instantaneous.  Instead of thinking of what someone is doing as a bad decision, think of it as in process toward greatness.

Third, always remember that what triggers you about others likely says more about you.  If I oversleep and that really bothers you, then it is time to examine what has you so triggered.  It is very likely that examination will lead to more awareness for you, which is truly valuable.

Other people’s choices do not have to trigger you.  When they do, explore yourself instead of blaming someone else. 


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