It is Easy to Point other People’s Problems

And much harder to address our own

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It is much easier to point out other’s flaws and harder to address our own.

It is easy to sit and chat with friends about how so and so’s boyfriend does not treat her right or they constantly fight. It provides a certain level of satisfaction and superiority.

Because, we don’t have those problems.

We can see them in others but not in ourselves. Or we can see them in ourselves but we refuse to see them as a problem.

We can discuss at great length how a family member is struggling and assume we know exactly what they need to turn their life around.

The truth is we don’t know.

We don’t know what other people need unless they tell us.

“It is the peculiar quality of a fool to perceive the faults of others and to forget his own. You can ‘t clear your own fields while you’re counting the rocks on your neighbor’s farm.” -Cicero

I have had discussions with people in my life that go along the following lines:

“I feel so sorry her, she is clearly not happy in her relationship.”

“He treats her so badly. I don’t understand why they are together.”

I can see other’s problems with one look at their life but I deny my own just as quickly. It's like admitting you are wrong. It is bloody difficult and painful. No one wants to admit they are struggling with something messy, difficult and painful.

It is easy to say:

She looks unhappy

and much harder to say:

I am unhappy/lonely/depressed.

Why is it harder?

I think it is a form of projection. Putting our problems and negative feelings onto someone else. The art of making other people feel our bad feelings.

We feel superior. Because pointing out other people’s problems means we don’t have to address our own. Especially if we make their problems seems a lot worse than our own.

I have often caught myself talking at great length with friends or family about a common acquaintance and discussing an issue I have identified.

Sometimes out of concern but not always.

These conversations can be very draining. Afterwards, I feel exhausted. I deflected attention away from myself because it felt easier at the time. It made me feel like I wasn’t struggling with anything. This was a lie.

Everyone struggles.

Everyone has problems or issues they need to address.

No one has a perfect life even though it may look that way from the outside.

So try, next time try not to point out someone else’s problem because maybe the problem you are ‘pointing out’ is a problem you have.

You will feel lighter and happier.

I am a Lawyer, Writer, Reader and Traveller. From Johannesburg, South Africa. I am writing to find my voice. Fortune favours the brave.

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