How much mental energy is consumed by proving to ourselves and to others (i.e. our ‘BAEs’ – an endearing term that refers to our friends which has now been popularised by Pharrell Williams new song) that we are constantly ‘in the right’? We always have a reason as to why we did what we did or said what we said was indeed justified.
Consider this though… if each of us so strongly believe that we are ‘in the right’ all the time, then who is ever ‘in the wrong’? Well perhaps there is no absolute ‘right’ or ‘wrong’ at all. Perhaps it’s all just a matter of perspective…
There is a phenomenon in psychology known as the Fundamental Attribution Error (‘FAE’) which recognises that we all have an innate tendency to judge ourselves by our inner intentions yet others by their external actions. In other words, when someone does something, we tend to overestimate the effect of their personality and underestimate the effect of their context in explaining their behaviour. So for example, when our friend doesn’t call or text us back, our initial reaction is often a conclusion that they are being rude, yet in reality it’s more likely that they were just having a really stressful day at work and it accidentally slipped their mind.
The truth is, most people have good intentions just like ourselves and they probably also have a justification as to why it was actually them that was ‘in the right’ all along. If only we could constantly remind ourselves that we are all subject to the same challenges, difficulties, and problems that life throws at us, we would give the people around us the benefit of the doubt more often and save ourselves a LOT of energy and heart-ache in the process. Not to mention unnecessary stress and the undue health ramifications of it which add to our need to meditate in the first place 😛