Second Chance to Live

Sharing Hope in the Face of Adversity — One Piece at a Time

Critical, Judgmental and Antagonistic — What to Do?

Posted by Second Chance to Live on August 13, 2013

Hello and welcome back to Second Chance to Live my friend. I am happy to see that you decided to stop by to visit with me. Thank you. I have been thinking about some thing that I would like to share with you. During some journaling today some “dots” of my thinking connected. I have been aggravated about several things for quite a while. Recently, I had an awareness that because I am powerless over these things I need to stop being critical of them. But then I realized I needed to look a little closer.

This week I started to revisit a concept that I have learned from Dr.’s Margaret and Jordan Paul. The concept of Inner Bonding. In Dr. Margaret Paul’s book, Inner Bonding she talks about the concept of the intent to protect and the intent to learn. One of the principles – from what I understand – of inner bonding is when I am  in a state of judgment or criticism I abandon myself. Instead of having the motivation to learn, I seek to protect myself. Instead of growing from the circumstances, I am stymied by them.

Instead of learning from what I am experiencing, I seek to defend a part of myself that I am judging and criticizing. Instead of learning from my discomfort, I can find myself feeling shame and feeling isolated.   

What I learned from my journaling this morning is that when I am in a critical state – being critical of myself or other people – I am unconsciously choosing to be antagonistic. I am antagonistic toward both myself and the individual (s) or situation (s) that aggravate me. One definition of antagonism is acting in opposition; opposing, especially mutually; unfriendly. Through journaling about my aggravation, I became aware of the antagonism that I was showing to myself and toward the source of my aggravation.

Today’s Thought

When I act in opposition or in an opposing way, I am unable to show compassion toward myself or toward other people. When I act in opposition or in an opposing way, I treat both myself and other people with contempt. On the other hand, when I act with compassion, I am empowered to learn from my circumstances – to be able to take advantage of opportunities. In the process, when I act in compassion I empower other people to learn from their circumstances – to be able to take advantage of opportunities.   

What this awareness speaks to me is that when I am in a place where I am being critical or judgmental of myself or other people, I need to stop myself. I need to find out why I am being critical or judgmental. I need to examine why I find myself being antagonistic. By identifying why I have been antagonistic, I am able to learn from my aggravation. By learning from my aggravation, I am able to curb my antagonism. By curbing my antagonism, I am able to move from a place of contempt, to a place of compassion.

By moving to a place of compassion, I am able to stop “fighting” against myself and other people.

As you read this article and questions come to mind, please send those questions to me. All questions are good question. In the event that you would like to leave a comment, I would love to hear from you. You may send a question or leave a comment by clicking on this link: Contact Page.

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All material presented on Second Chance to Live is copyright and cannot be, copied, reproduced, or distributed in any way without the express, written consent of Craig J. Phillips, MRC, BA Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs CC BY-NC-ND

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