Sunday, May 16, 2010

What Does This Have To Do With Me?

As I've approached various situations in my life during the past few months, I've come from the standpoint of how does this affect MY life.  This applies to both personal relationships, family, and professionally.  If it has nothing to do with MY life, then I have to ask myself why am I getting involved.  Therefore, I think everyone should do the same.

Sometimes, no, most of the time, other people's problems can become our problems.  It starts with someone confiding their problems to you.  Next, you are offering suggestions, advice, or assistance.  Third, you are beginning to feel what that other person is feeling regarding THEIR situation.  Whether it is anger, resentment, worry, etc., it is affecting you.  Finally, you are trying to take an active role in making sure that there is an immediate solution to THEIR PROBLEM and suddenly it becomes YOUR PROBLEM.

Growing up, I have always been the type of person that people can confide in.  I would always give my opinions on the situation and try to find the best solutions.  In high school, there was this girl name Darlene.  Darlene never really liked me.  In fact, we fought one day outside the classroom.  After the fight, a few months later, I don't remember how, my family and I helped her find a new foster home and get away from a very abusive father.  This was me helping with another person's problem.  Well, that was over ten years ago and this is now.

Work, rent, car note, bills, relationships, friendships, drama, drama, and more drama, are some of the things that I had to deal within MY own life.  The last three "dramas" are other peoples problems and not my own.  I had to ask myself, "Why am I taking on other people's problems when I have problems of my own?".  Though I have always been the type of person to help other people, I had to ask myself, "Who's helping me?".

Besides God, the answer is no one.  Life is like a scale.  You have on one side your problems and on the other side someone elses.  If you only have your problems to deal with, then you have a much lighter load.  You have the opportunity to focus on how to fix YOUR problems.  You don't have to worry about crossing that boarder line of going to far or being to emotionally invested in someone elses situation.

Like a person who gets behind the wheel of a car the first time, nervously trying to learn how to parallel park, this feeling of not being in control is both captivating and frightening.  When you drive a car, no one else is allowed to get behind that wheel but yourself.  There is control and ownership of personal responsibilities, problems, and our own drama.  I am not saying to be cold to your friends, family, or people that need your assistance.  I just want everyone to remember that when you accept someones problems into your life, then you are getting behind the driver's seat of someones problems and they will immediately become your own.

"If you laugh, I laugh.  If you cry, I cry.  If you jump of a roof, I will _________."  Before you get involved in a situation, ask yourself, "What Does This Have To Do With Me?".  


How do YOU deal with other people's problems?