Accepting Other People

You can’t change other people.
Most of us know this instinctively, yet we often can’t help but try to change others and fit them into some mold that, we feel, would be “better.”
The problem with trying to change others is that it can’t be done, and so we find ourselves wasting time and energy on a goal that we will never achieve. That’s why being able to let go of the need to change others is so freeing – it frees time and energy for more useful stuff!
While we can’t change others, we can certainly change our communication patterns with them. To do that, we mostly need to change our own behavior, or our own reaction to those people.
Saying that we should stop trying to change other people is just like saying “live and let live” – what a beautiful idea in theory, but how hard it is for most of us to actually do it! For some reason, humans have this deep need to feel that they are better than others – and what better way to establish that we are “better” than trying to change, or “fix” the other person?
Of course, the result of this need to fix someone else (when they can’t possibly be fixed because they are just fine) leads into many relationship issues and communication problems. Our communication with other people would be much better, and they would appear a lot less “difficult,” if we were able to accept them as they are.
Once we accept others, we can truly listen to them and understand them, which helps us to match out style to their style and makes it easier for them to listen to us and accept us. The result: a much better communication experience, where both sides, instead of labeling each other as “difficult people,” accept each other, listen to each other, assume positive intent, and are able to effectively communicate with each other.
Want a better relationship? Don’t try to change the other person. Instead, accept them, and change yourself – not your core values of course, but the way you communicate with that person. In response, they would be more accepting of you, and your entire relationship will be better. This is what understanding other people is all about.