In the dance that is life, there are very few situations that I have control over; but in my distorted mind, I think I have control over everything. If I were to be gut wrenching honest, I would probably tell you that I think I have control over the universe. I don’t say that because I think I’m special, I say that because I think that if I line up the stars and the moon and put my right foot on the back of a chair and stick out my tongue while raising my hands, you’ll behave exactly as I think you should. Of course the reality of that situation is far from the truth.
Most may not admit it, but I’d wager that more than a few have thought, “if only he/she would quit/start doing this or that, I’d be so much happier.” Once that thought is entertained, a plan begins to formulate in the mind and without knowing it, we begin to manipulate the situation in an attempt to ease our discomfort by attempting to get someone else to do something that we think will make us (and perhaps them) happy. In the long run, the other person doesn’t change and we become more resentful because others didn’t do what “we” thought they should do to make everyone concerned happy. The result can be painful to both parties concerned.
I can’t make others change. It is an impossibility. I don’t want to make others change because who they are is what attracted me to them in the first place. The only person I have any chance of changing is me. I have an obligation to be the best “me” that I can be; so why not change things that I can instead of attempting to change things that I know I can not? I am human, and there are times I still think, “if only he/she would….” but now I find myself stopping and asking myself, “would him changing really make me happy?” The answer is almost always no. I am the only one that can give myself long-term happiness; others can only give me moments of joy.
When I attempt to make others happy by attempting to change them, I only set myself up for failure. I want to experience each person I meet, I don’t want mini versions of me. I don’t want to change you into a carbon copy of all that I think is “right” in the world, I want to experience some things others think are “right” and maybe meet somewhere in the middle.