Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Don't try to Fix People

Don't try to Fix People
Fixing other people is our major mistake. We try to fix our partners, our husbands, our wives, or girlfriend or boy friend, our colleagues, friends; we even try to fix people we don't know.

You can see these scenarios anywhere. Wives nags and complains about their husbands. Wives complain that their husbands are not sweet, not romantic, drunkard and etc. There's a story about a wife complaining about her husband because she got a bar soap for Valentine’s Day. The brand of the soap? Mr. Clean!

Husbands complain about their wives too. Husbands complain that their wives are naggers, they spend too much, and their wives are hysterical and historical. Historical meaning their wives could remember all the past mistakes of her husbands, including date, time and place.

Parents also complaint about their children and children also complains about their parent (very common).

Why do we want to fix other people?
We want to fix other people because we love them. But sometimes we want to fix them because of our own personal motives. We also want to fix other people because we compare them to other people.

If you always compare your wife’s body with Beyonce or Angel Locsin, she can’t compete. Or if you compare your husband’s salary with Manny Paquiao’s earnings, he can’t compete.

Even parents compare their kids with other kids. One mother tells her little boy, “Junior, why can’t you get good grades like your sister? She gets straight A’s in all subjects. But you’re highest grades are Recess and Lunch.”

Kids cannot flourish in an environment where they are being judged. Kids flourish in an environment of appreciation. They need to know that their parents accept them for their uniqueness.


Instead of trying to fix other people, you should fix yourself first.
It's easier that why. Change how you react, change your responses, change your thinking. But if you think you cannot change yourself, how much more other people when you don't have 100% control over them.

You can never fix anyone. Because fixing is an inside job. Never forced from the outside. Yes, you should inspire. You should guide. You should teach. But you cannot force. At the end of the day, the only thing you can do is to love the person by creating space for the other person to fix himself.

Here's another story

One day, a wife came to her husband with a magazine in her hand, “Darling, this article is wonderful. It describes a little activity that we can both do to improve our marriage. Can we do it together?”

“Sure,” her husband said.

“It says here that for one day, each of us will separately write a list of what areas we want the other to change. Little annoyances, little irritations, etc. And then tomorrow, we share this list to each other. Deal?”

“Deal!” the husband smiled.

That day, the man sat on the living room with paper and hand. The wife went to the bedroom and did the same thing.

The next day, over breakfast, the wife said, “Game? Can I start first?”

“Yes,” the husband said.

The wife pulled out three pages. Single spaced. Font 8. It was a long list. She began to read her list. “Darling, I don’t like it when you do this…” On and on, she read the little ways her husband annoyed her.

The man felt a sting in his heart. The wife noticed this and asked, “Do you want me to continue?”

“I can handle it. Go on,” the man said.

So the wife continued to read.

Finally, the woman said, “Okay, it’s your turn.”

The husband pulled out his piece of paper and said, “Yesterday, I asked the question what are the changes I want in you. But hard as I tried to think, I couldn’t think of one thing.” He then showed to her the empty piece of paper in his hand. “Because to me, you’re perfect in your imperfections.   I’ve accepted who you are—strengths and weaknesses. And I love the whole package. I love the mix. You are a wonderful person and I love you so much.”

The wife began to sob, rolled up her three pages in her hand, and beat her husband on the head, “Bwiset ka!” And hugged him tight for a very long time.

For more inspirational articles by bestselling author Bo Sanchez, visit his website at www.bosanchez.ph, practical soulfood for successful people.

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