Sunday, July 31, 2011

What Can You Learn From Your Relationships?

A relationship is more of an assignment than a choice. We can walk away from the assignment, but we cannot walk away from the lessons it presents. We stay with a relationship until a lesson is learned, or we simply learn it another way.
 - Marianne Williamson

In her insightful book, Return to Love, Marianne Williamson talks about different types of relationships and how every relationship, even a casual encounter with a stranger, contains lessons. We are brought together not by chance, but by design.

As I wrote about in Life Lessons, life is a giant classroom and we are all students. Sometimes the most difficult lessons are the ones we learn from those closest to us. Usually these people are family members or those we live with. 

How do you react when someone spills the milk or coffee grounds on the clean kitchen floor? How do you respond when the washroom is left in a state of disarray? Or maybe your kids are holding you up which causes you to be late. Do you respond with love, patience and grace? No? Then there's your lesson.

You're in a relationship with everyone else who's driving on the road with you. Did someone cut you off? Is someone driving too slowly? Did someone steal "your" parking spot? It can be irritating can't it (especially if you're PMS)? How do you respond? Do you let your anger destroy your inner peace, or do you let it go and wish the person well? It's tough to do, isn't it? 

When you are tempted to get frustrated and lose your peace, remember that moment contains a very important lesson. The lesson is to be more loving and full of grace. You can choose to let your ego die a small death, or you can choose to be offended. If you choose to be offended, you will continue to encounter similar situations until you learn the lesson. The choice is yours. Today, make the choice to return to love.

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