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No. 550, September 11, 2006

"Someone sent to you for practise"

You come across a difficult, domineering or manipulating colleague. Skilfully they push you aside. You feel offended but cannot understand what happened. It is easy to be critical or judging to the person in question. They are probably behaving inappropriately. Shall we get back or…?

Another way is to see this person as "someone sent to you for practise" as the Swedish film director Kay Pollak has expressed it. This means that we own the problem and take responsibility for it. In this way seeing a difficult person as "someone sent to you for practise" can be very liberating. We take the problem home to the only person whose thoughts and actions we are in full control of – ourselves.

Here, a few ideas on seeing difficult people as "someone sent to you for practise":

Do I not have any empathy for those who want to get back or start a shouting match? Absolutely. Seeing every person as "someone sent to you for practise" demands a solid self-esteem and confidence in oneself. But we can reflect also on this. What do I judge myself for? Why don’t I see myself as the fantastic unique person I am, just like everyone else?

People such as Dalai Lama and Nelson Mandela handle the most difficult "someone sent for practise". But the rest of us can still practise now and then.

Creative regards! Jonas Himmelstrand

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© 2006 Strategies to Learn & Grow Newsletter • Printable version

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