Emotional upkeep and other people’s flaws
When you live with someone for a while, their flaws begin to show (and so do yours). The first people with whom we have this experience are our family. And the experience repeats throughout our entire life. At school, at work, with relatives, at church, in sports, in dating, in marriage — anywhere we get close to someone and live with for a while. And so it is until we die.
Each person is different but they all have their peculiarities. Now think of someone with whom you live, or have lived, and their flaws. Immediately, you think of words like: controlling, cheeky, spoiled, arrogant, difficult, fussy, lazy, dirty, careless, moody, messy, selfish, boring, and so on. For each person, an adjective that is not very positive.
And make no mistake: those who know us also have an adjective for us!
The bad news is that every human being has flaws. If you think someone doesn’t, it’s because you haven’t lived with him or her yet. Our challenge then is to guard our heart so that other people’s flaws do not bring up ours.
It’s very easy to let it happen. You live with someone for a while and you start noticing their flaws; it annoys you so much that all you see when you look at that person are their flaws. This is when you start to dislike them. And if you do not deal with your anger, you will end up talking bad about that person to others whenever an opportunity arises.
But it’s you who suffers the most with it, not the other person. It is your heart that is filled with anger and other negative feelings.
Of course there are cases where a person hurts you so much that the best thing really is for both of you to go on separate ways.
But the good news is that most people have virtues that outweigh their flaws. We just need to learn to focus on the virtues rather than be obsessed with the flaws. At the time of anger, we need to have an internal dialogue with ourselves to remind us of the following: “She has this flaw but she has many virtues”, “I will not judge him for it; after all, I have flaws too”.
This emotional upkeep must be done on a regular basis to ensure our good mood and good relationships.
Don’t forget to do it regularly.