None of us are perfect. We all make mistakes, we hurt others, sometimes intentionally and other times without knowing. We also all know what it feels like to be hurt. A lot of this pain, hurting and suffering are caused by false perceptions and miscommunication.
I have recently been reading the beautiful writing of Thich Nhat Hahn, specifically his book, “The Art of Communication”. One of the aspects of his teachings that resonated with me the most is how we must not only be honest with ourselves when we are suffering but also with those we love. We must let them know that we are suffering and ask them for help.
Too often when we are in states of great emotional suffering we lash out at others as a way to give our suffering company. I have been guilty of this and I know first hand that projecting our suffering on others does not provide relief. Only when we are honest about our personal struggles will we find the path to healing.
An important aspect in our healing is apologizing to those we have hurt. In the moments in my life where someone has hurt me deeply, I can’t tell you how I longed for just two, simple words…I’m sorry. It is really that simple. I’m sorry. Two words that when said with an open heart can begin to heal even the deepest wounds.
The next time you find yourself so hurt that you want to inflict pain on those who hurt you or withdraw from those who care deeply about you, instead turn to your loved ones and tell them, “I am suffering and I need your help.” When you know that you have hurt someone deeply, purposefully or without knowing, turn to them and say “I’m sorry.” Both seemingly simple, yet profound actions will help you to move away from suffering toward joy.