In my schooling days, I learned many a family/marriage-therapy theory/concept.
The one that stuck w/ me the most: The Benign Assumption.
In short: Giving people the benefit of the doubt. Assuming that other people (spouses/family/friends etc) have your best interest at heart.
The driver in front of you cuts you off.
But maybe he’s on his way to the hospital because his baby is sick.
Someone says something thoughtless/unkind to you.
Maybe their heart is breaking (for whatever reason) and they didn’t sleep at all last night.
That mom at the grocery store temporarily loses her cool and yells at her kid.
Maybe her mom only ever yelled at her, too. Maybe she's a single mom, trying her best.
This mode of thinking RESONATES and CLICKS with me like nothing else. I want to live my life this way. And the more I practice, the more it becomes habit. The more it becomes habit, the more it becomes second nature. Or first nature, hopefully.
It kind of becomes a little game, when I see something that rubs me the wrong way, to make up a story (sometimes elaborate and silly) that explains away the behavior and casts the offender in a positive light.
What, the entire world hasn’t been faithfully reading my blog? I bet it’s because my writing is so beautiful it makes them weep…and who has time to cry and get your makeup all in a mess?
So I invite you: Be Benign. At least for a week. Let’s make T-shirts. (In tie dye, yes?)
Because we all deserve a little leeway. Why even bother thinking else-wise?