Question: Rockie asks: The people in my family like to complain. Any time we get together, it is almost a contest to see who’s got it worse. Its either their illnesses, or the economy or their kids. I don’t want to hear this anymore, but I can’t not be there when we get together. Can I change them? Should I avoid them? What should I do?
Answer: Ease out of it. Take small steps at a time. If there are people you have to associate with, perhaps at a family function or event, do what I call “hug and run”. Say hello, give them a kiss on the cheek, ask about the children and respond to every statement of sorrow with, “I know he is doing wonderfully!” Then excuse yourself and go talk to someone across the room who is more positive. Don’t allow yourself to be drawn into a conversation about ailments or lack or limitation of any kind. Know that the purveyors of doom are acting out the bad habit of perpetuating fear or worry. Bless them and send them loving energy, then ease out of it. Resist being drawn into a debate. Although some debating is stimulating and can be positive when it is a genuine sharing of ideas, most of the time both sides are adamant in what they believe and neither are really listening to each other but are only preparing their next chance to refute what the other is saying. When you feel yourself being drawn in, ask yourself “is this creating more love or more light?” If it isn’t, hug and run.