Thursday, February 4, 2010

Do I want to be "happy" or "right"?

In the many years that I have been counseling or been counseled, I have read many self help books. One that a counselor encouraged me to read is called...YOU CAN BE HAPPY NO MATTER WHAT  by Richard Carlson, Ph.D. I purchased it and then purchased another one because I thought it had so many wonderful things in it, that I wanted to have an extra one to loan out. I was reading it again today and came upon a part that I had underlined, this is what it said..."DO I WANT TO BE "HAPPY" OR "RIGHT"? 

If the most important element in our personal relationships is the feeling that exists between us and our partner, then being right isn't relevant, not if it diminishes the love we feel toward another person. When we understand the way in which our belief systems encourage us to validate our own rough interpretations of life, we learn that the same is true for everyone else. If we already know this we won't have to argue or to be upset over our differences.

As happy feeling between people increase, the issue of right or wrong seems less significant. We still can maintain our opinions or preferences, but know that these opinions stem from our thoughts, not from eternal truth. Our positive feeling becomes more important than our opinions. As our appreciation of happiness in relationship increases, we take the notice of the things that tend to take us away from this feeling. One major catalyst taking us away is the need to be right.

The need to be right stems from an unhealthy relationship to your own thoughts. Do you believe that your thoughts are representative of reality and need to be defended, or do you realize that realities are different as seen through different eyes?  Your answer to this question will determine, to a large extent, your ability to remain in a positive feeling state.

Everyone I know who has put positive feeling above being right on their priority list, has come to see that differences in opinion will take care of themselves. A more positive feeling state allows  us to see other positions, to listen with a finer ear, and to express our own beliefs in a more compassionate and caring way. (We might even learn something!") It allows us the luxury of not caring so much if it turns out that we can't agree.

To sum it up is, we all  see through different glasses, through the experiences that we have had throughout out whole life, that is how we see the world. Is it a good pair of glasses to look through or do we need to go get another prescription?  I guess, it is a good reminder to me, that I need to watch my  thoughts and how often I feel the need to be right?  I need to pay attention to my willingness to change and to let others have their opinions and views without being offended. Just some food for thought!

Good night dear friends!

"Don't walk in front of me; I may not follow. Don't walk behind me; I may not lead. Just walk beside me and be my friend." ~ Albert Camus


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