You can lead a horse to water…

As an outsider, meaning not the person them self, it’s so easy to see the “big picture.”  It’s easy to see how you think someone should be living their life, when you aren’t that someone. Fact of the matter is, you can’t tell someone how to live their life. 

In my life I’ve been there, on both sides of the equation. I’ve been the person who wants someone to make a certain decision, and was disappointed when they didn’t. I’ve been the person who people want to do a certain think, and I don’t.

 I’ve also been the person wanting someone to make a decision, and they do make it… Then what. Do you try to keep telling this person how to live their life? 

What makes us, as humans, think we are experts in other’s lives? Fact of the matter is, we’ve never been in their shoes. We’ve never lived their life. There are so many aspects to someone’s life that help them make their decisions. 

A couple years ago I made a decision that people did not like. I had people telling me to do this or do that. I shut down. I closed myself off to just about everyone, but specifically to those people. Eventually, I did end up making the decision that they wanted me to ale, but I had to come to it on my terms. 

At the same time that I was turning my life into a tornado I had another friend who was in a similar situation. I wanted her to make a decision. She made it, and I watched her struggle with the decision. I hurt for her when she hurt, and I carried the blame on myself because it’s the decision I wanted her to make. One day I couldn’t handle it anymore, and I explained my guilt to her. She told me she didn’t make the decisions because I wanted her to, she made it because that was the choice she wanted to make. I felt better, but still felt a twinge of guilt. She’s now doing pretty well, that decision still rears its ugly head from time to time; and I’m still there for her, as her #1 cheerleader. 

It’s so easy to think you know best, but you don’t. Don’t tell someone to forgive someone for the sake of somethings else. Don’t tell someone that they’re in a bad relationship, and they need to end it. Don’t tell someone how to live their life. Instead, be a support person. Give ideas, give help, don’t push, and most importantly love them through it. Because while you can see the whole picture, and can tell what’s going on, they can’t, as an insider it’s hard to crawl out and rise above to see the whole picture. 

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