Choice is another concept that is woven through the Meeting the Shadow program. Choice in this instance includes how we choose to interpret events, whether or not we choose to forgive, and the degree to which we choose to look at the lessons and gifts within even the most negative of life’s experiences. In this context, we are mainly looking at how choice affects us as individuals.
There are times when those types of choices do impact others. Take for instance a situation that makes us angry, and we choose to react in a way that is hurtful or harmful to that other person. We also see this impact in the world of systemic constellations where the choice of one family member impacts generation after generation.
What has struck me recently is the number of situations being discussed where one person’s choice negatively impacts another. The rationales border on the absurd at times, and led me to think of this example:
Choose to run a red light. If no else is in the intersection the only impact is to the law. If someone is in the intersection and you broadside them, your choice has consequences that reach far beyond the law and yourself.
This is a very black and white example. However, it opens the door for us to more deeply reflect on how our choices impact others in a variety of ways. Consider whether you have chosen to:
- Spread a lie or gossip
- Limit someone’s ability to choose
- Insist that someone believe AS you do
- Belittle someone for being different
- Overreact during a disagreement
- See how a situation impacts only you
- Do something reckless
When we choose to misinterpret an event, then choose to overreact to our misinterpretation, and then choose to harm someone in some way because of our overreaction, the impact is complex and far-reaching.
Are you able to see the impact of your choices? Do you believe that there are a multitude of choices available in most situations? Do you consider that others are entitled to make different choices than you based on their life’s circumstances?
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