Recently, I had an unpleasant experience followed by a revelation whilst I was out running. My running app (yeah yeah, I’m a geek about stuff like that…) gives me the opportunity to take a photo and comment about the run and then posts it up on Facebook. This is what I wrote:
On my run today, I was jeered at by a gang of lads in a car. I let it get to me for a while, then I ran through this graveyard and it changed my thinking. I thanked its occupants for reminding me that, by the time I’m pushing up daisies like they are, I’ll have lived my perfectly imperfect life to its fullest – running (however slowly) along the beautiful seafront when I can, running my business to help other people enjoy THEIR perfectly imperfect lives, and running the gauntlet by taking risks and trying new things as often as possible. I don’t want to go to my grave having lived from fear and having made other people feel small or bad about themselves. I want to have lived from love, having helped other people realise how fabulous they are and to relish the precious gift of life. So thank you lads. You’ve inadvertently left me with a huge smile on my face and a renewed sense of purpose.
Well, the post got a huge amount of likes, struck a nerve and spawned a really interesting discussion in the comments. One person, the lovely Cam Berry, found and posted this wonderful quotation from Yehuda Berg, which seemed to sum the situation up well:
“Hurt people hurt people. That’s how pain patterns gets passed on, generation after generation after generation. Break the chain today. Meet anger with sympathy, contempt with compassion, cruelty with kindness. Greet grimaces with smiles. Forgive and forget about finding fault. Love is the weapon of the future.”
I loved how the boys in that car had started a quick-spreading fire of positivity through that post and people’s reactions to it. I also was happy to find out that at least two of my Facebook friends had loved ones who were in that graveyard, metaphorically cheering me on that day.
If the jeering had had such a positive effect in the end, imagine what would happen if we took Yehuda Berg’s advice every day. Without wishing to sound maudlin, I rather like the idea that I might be, a long way in the future, metaphorically cheering on runners who come through the graveyard where I’m lying, having lived a life of wielding the weapon of love on the world.
How could you wield some love today? How about starting by sharing this post?
© Straightforward Coaching, 2014