It’s so easy for us to assume that because someone looks fine or appears to have a good life that they aren’t going through hard things. It’s also easy for us to assume that our own struggles are more difficult than someone else is since we are only capable of fully understanding the depths of our own personal pain.
The reality is that there is so much more to other people’s lives than what we are seeing on the surface. Not everyone’s struggles are as visible as others. And while some people share their struggles freely, others keep theirs more private so we may never know what someone else is dealing with. They may feel it’s too private to share, or they may be protecting someone else, or they may be afraid to share, or they may feel embarrassed, or they might be feeling alone or ashamed…we just never know the reasons people may not want to openly share their struggles, but we can know without a doubt that everyone does indeed have struggles they are dealing with, and everyone would benefit from being given the gift of compassion.
There is no way to understand just how heavy a person’s struggles are unless we are living in their actual shoes, which we obviously aren’t, so we can’t. That’s why it’s important to remind ourselves not to rush to judgment or jump to conclusions because nine times out of ten our conclusions will be wrong. And regardless of what may appear to be on the outside, we just never know the extent of what’s occurring on the inside.
What if instead of assuming other’s lives are perfect, or much easier than our own, we were to give each other the gift of recognizing that everyone is struggling with things that are difficult for them…everyone is carrying burdens that weight them down….everyone could use an encouraging word and being given the benefit of the doubt…everyone needs compassion.
“If we could look into each other’s hearts and understand the unique challenges each of us faces, I think we would treat each other much more gently, with more love, patience, tolerance, and care.” – Marvin J. Ashton
Have a wonderful weekend everyone!
~Amy Rees Anderson