My Manifesto: The problem may be you.

> _Do not place blame with others. Instead, look inside yourself, recognize your own shortcomings and work to overcome them. That way, others may be able to learn to do the same._

This entry in my manifesto reminds me of a difficult, yet crucial, way to change my thinking. That being, instead of constantly pointing the finger of blame at others, look within myself for the solution. We all carry a measure of guilt and innocence within us. Meditate on your guilt and it may allow you to see the innocence in another. The best way to explain this is to provide the following example…

How many times have you gotten into a disagreement with someone else and said something like “You made me angry!” or “You hurt my feelings.”? Well, let me tell you a little secret – Those statements are inherently false. The fact is that no one has control over our emotions except for ourselves. No one can “make you angry” or “hurt your feelings. The only one who can affect how you feel is you. It is a choice. It may not feel like one at the time, but I suspect part of that is our initial denial of control inherent in the very statements alone. We have choice and control over our actions and reactions. The anger, the hurt, the bad feelings, the negative emotions, they only affect us. By declaring otherwise, we are not only denying truth but we are also denying our inherent ability to change the situation by making a conscious choice to react differently. It is not an easy thing to do, especially when one is emotionally wounded, but it is really the only path to resolution. The more factual way to state these feelings would be “I am choosing to react with anger to this action that you have done.” or “I am choosing to feel hurt over this action you have done”. By doing so, we assume not only truth but we also assume the right to change it if we choose to.

This is just one example. The fact is that many situations would be better solved, and faster solved, if instead of being so quick to point the finger of blame, we looked inside ourselves to ask what we could change to solve the problem.

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