(An excerpt from our upcoming book)
The Wind And The Sun
“When the winds of change blow, some people build walls and others build windmills.” --Chinese Proverb
How many times have we desperately tried to get through to others that end up in negative arguments that had more negativity to the pot and was there before, or our help or attempts to improve things end up biting us in the kisser? Or how many times have we tried to help someone, and our words simply fell upon deaf ears?
For that like the story of the wind and the sun, except with a slight twist.
A man was wearing a jacket but let's say in this version that it’s killing him. He’s so set in his ways and distrust that he’s clinging to this jacket for dear life and protesting against any who would dare approach it.
The wind and sun watch this man hopelessly as he clings to his own downfall as if it was his last hope. The wind says, “I'm going to help get this guy’s jacket off! I gotta save him!” Then the wind blows as hard as he can, but the harder the wind blows, the harder the man clings onto his jacket for “dear life.”
The sun smiles and says, “I got this.” The sun then simply gives the man warmth, unconditional love and acceptance. For he knows that the man is not his anger, hatred, bigotry, laziness etc. He knows the man is not his jacket or his mud. None of us are. The sun accepts that man for who he is inside and continues to send him love and warmth. Soon the man says, “It’s too warm for a jacket,” and takes it off.
It’s similar if you see a deer in the forest and try to approach, the deer will run, just like many of us. You must first work on yourself and make yourself and your environment peaceful. Once you do that, and decide you have the energy and patience to believe in the person that you are trying to help, to believe that they can understand where you’re coming from, to believe that they have the ability to act on it. The better we can hold onto our love and faith of others, combined with the simple assumption of their improvement, the more magic our words carry. Instead of believing that someone has no hope in simply yelling at them, what do we really expect to happen? Our communication needs to also carry with it our warmth, love and belief that the person, that were speaking to can understand and act on it, otherwise why speak at all?
That's how we need to learn to help each other; to be OK with each other's pain, setbacks and imperfections. We can learn to be OK with each other's different opinions, god forbid we each view the world in slightly different ways.
Dare to believe in others improvement, no matter how long it takes, just like the sun.