Are You Guilty of Projecting on Others?
One of the more confusing concepts that we speak about on our spiritual path is that of projecting. Before we speak about this more lets clearly define projection. We could say it is the process of: externalizing and attributing (an emotion or motive, for example) unconsciously to someone or something else in order to avoid anxiety.
In other words, let’s say you perceive someone doing something that your mind judges is not appropriate or is a flaw in their personality. You may feel compelled to let them know that the way they are behaving is not correct, annoying or inappropriate. You may even have friends around you that agree with you, making you feel like you are “right” and your righteous indignation further compels you to say whatever it is to that other person.
But it’s not really up to us to judge others to make ourselves feel more comfortable. Remember how we said in our definition that projection is something we do to avoid anxiety? When we see someone doing or saying something we do not like we get uncomfortable because as soon as we judge we have an emotional reaction to our judging. Rather than take responsibility for that and own it – the mind must get rid of it immediately and place it elsewhere.
People do what they are going to do and it isn’t always what we want wish or hope for. If you do not put your judgment on others you will not have an emotional reaction to them, you will not take their words and deeds personally and you will not need to justify your projecting your feelings and judgment onto them just to make yourself feel better.
As spiritual warriors this behavior is aberrant as we are not victims of anyone or anything. Taking the actions of others personally means we believe that what others do can bother us, hurt us or affect us. And this is definitively not truth – we are in charge of our creation!
I challenge you this month to take action to stop yourself from projecting onto others. If you do this you will find that people want to be around you more, as no one likes feeling judged by others. ♥
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