This is another way of saying, as therapists are wont to do, that before you address a problem you should figure out who owns it and whether it's a biggie or a smallie. Spotting and challenging assumptions is a handy tool for letting go of some of that should and shouldn't crap folks absorb growing up without knowing why -- stuff that gets in the way of everyday pleasure or convenience for no real reason.I have another friend who has been working with this same conflict resolution tool in an energy class she is taking. The first time she said, "Someone else owns that problem. That one is not yours." I thought that she was trying to get me to take an easy way out of a problem. I, also, thought, "Maybe, but I still have to live with the other person's behavior and anger." Then, the beauty of the tool was realized. If I am able to understand the assumptions of others, and understand my own assumptions, I am able own my baggage and purge if necessary and not feel guilty if I don't meet the expectations of others. Yes, this is more difficult than it seems. Here are a few of my assumptions:
- Really, you shouldn't wear white shoes or pants after Labor Day unless they are the proper shade of winter white.
- Table manners were devised for a reason. Use them so you won't offend.
- A person has a right to a bit of privacy. Don't show up unannounced or use my stuff without asking.
- You must give 110% to any project you agree to do.
- My opinion has value, so I should be able to voice it without interruption.
What are yours?