I Am Learning That Some People Always Need To Be Unhappy About Something, And The Wisest Response Is To Let Them Be

When you’re a sensitive person, you spend half of your time trying to temper your own reactions to the world, and the rest of it trying to bend, mold and change yourself to control the way other people react to you.

The only thing scarier than your own emotions spiraling out-of-control is when other people’s do.

The truth about being altruistic is that it’s often not a premeditated thing. Genuinely wanting to help other people is an impulse for which you don’t feel the need to reward yourself. Going out of your way to try to change someone’s emotional experience often does more for your ego than it actually does for them.

You cannot change the way people think and perceive the world around them. You cannot force them to react differently. Your power rests only in yourself. You can only change people through influence, but to do that, you have to first embody the traits that you think everyone else should, too.

On the surface, it can be easy to judge or condemn someone for how they behave, especially if you don’t know the underlying causes.

Some people have a higher need for affect, which means that they naturally want to experience more intense emotions in their lives. Others so genuinely lack self-awareness that they can’t see how they’re creating and re-creating similar circumstances over and over again. Others need to validate their trauma in a way that’s not threatening: petty drama. Others feel so vulnerable themselves that being hateful towards others is their most ardent defense mechanism.

… And absolutely none of this is solvable by trying to police someone’s reaction to something.

People don’t change when they’re told to, they changed when they’re forced to. They change when not changing becomes the less comfortable option. People don’t become self-aware because someone lectured them enough. The hard and dirty truth of it all is that people come to terms with their bullshit when they are ready to. You don’t have to play their god.

When people are stuck in cycles of hate and judgment, they build glass walls, and keep throwing stones. People change themselves when they become so absolutely exhausted and fed up with trying to control their environments and circumstances, and realize eventually that was never the answer. When you meet a hateful, judgmental, cunning person, you don’t have to punish them. They will punish themselves tenfold by how they behave in the world, and how the world reacts to them.

This is not evil. This is growth.

So when you come across people who always seem to have a crisis on their hands, who are always the victim of someone’s misdoings, who always have something to complain about… let them. When you have to deal with people who are always angry, annoyed, outraged and pissed about something, honor their experience and walk away.

In the same way that they will eventually have to come to terms with how they choose to interact with the world, so too will you. Thought Catalog Logo Mark