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January 19, 2018

They Can’t Hear You

“People can only hear you when they are moving toward you, and they are not likely to when your words are pursuing them.”
(Rabbi Edwin Friedman)

 

Like gravity and motion, there are a few natural laws of relationship that simply cannot be denied. One of them is this:

 

You cannot chase somebody into a mutual embrace. If you want someone to respect you, listen to you, and find you appealing, you cannot chase them down.

 

The very act of our desperate pursuit makes us unattractive. The reason behind this law is simple—when we’re being chased by someone, we automatically assume they want something from us, and we assume they are more interested in controlling our reaction than they are in inviting our response.

 

Only by learning to slow down, back off, and sit with our anxiety can we ever have the chance to influence those we used to want to control.

 

This weekend, examine your efforts to “get” someone to do something. Are these efforts working? What would happen if you stopped chasing?

 

Peace begins with pause,

 

 

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