“So sorry to bother you, but..” ~ “I’m so sorry, am I in your way?” ~ “Nah it’s okay I don’t need a ride, I’ll just walk.” ~ “I don’t mean to trouble you, but..” ~ “No no it’s okay, I don’t need help.. I’ll manage.”
I can’t help but notice there are way too many people who tip-toe around each other as if they are a burden to the world. As if to say “I’m truly sorry that I exist. I will do my best to make myself as small as possible so that you are not inconvenienced by my mere presence.” I see this everywhere I go, whether it’s the customers I encounter at work, my friends, my partner or even myself. I remember the way I use to walk around the apartments/houses I’d share with others and literally tip-toe so as not to make too much noise. Or I would avoid using the shared spaces for fear that someone else needed it or that I would be noticed/judged for whatever I did.
How did we get here?
I’ve done some thinking to try and unpack why people go on living like this, and I think there are a few dynamics at play here:
- People in general lack self-respect, self-love and self-esteem. They see themselves as inferior and in constant competition to the people around them. They are living in total separation.. which is the polar opposite to the enlightened notion of non-dual oneness (our true nature).
- On some level, people actually believe they don’t have equal right to be here on this planet and as a part of society. They don’t necessarily see their being born as a conscious choice. They don’t value their life as sacred, and more or less see it as meaningless in comparison to others who are perhaps more worthy, important or deserving.
- People easily confuse this behavior with being “nice”. They believe they are actually acting in the highest ideal when they pander to others (at the expense of themselves). It’s a sort of over-compensation to the selfishness we see most people lost in (which is equally messed up). And so, they reinforce their behavior with this justification because they want so badly not to be seen as the asshole.
All of these reasons are quite obviously distortions from the fact of the matter, which is the following: you not only have just as much right to exist as anybody else, this entire reality and thing we call life is you. You are not separate from it in any way, shape or form. Any sense of separation is a mere construct of your programmed mind, your ego. The truth of the matter is that we’re all walking around co-existing and co-creating all of this reality, believing we’re individuals when in fact we are all fragmentations of the same energy (the source of all of creation).
To be fair, most everybody operates from this place of individuality to varying degrees (unless of course you are Jesus or the Buddha). But you will also notice that not everyone is walking around so apologetically either. There are those who are completely grounded in their bodies, know who they are and are not afraid to impose themselves on the world around them.. both to help others, and to get what is needed when necessary. When we come across people like this, we don’t think “what an asshole!”.. we actually admire their polite shamelessness.
You are allowed to exist
I believe it is so important to aspire to this more ideal, balanced way of being if you desire to grow to experience new possibilities and start re-engaging with the world in a profound way. You are allowed to ask for help. You are allowed to mess up from time to time and god forbid “inconvenience” another. You are allowed to emit all the noises that go along with being a human. You are allowed to exist! Just as much as every living/non-living, seen/unseen thing in this world. You are it.. all of it. And so is absolutely everything else around you.
So please, stop apologizing! Instead of saying “excuse me, I’m sorry”.. maybe try, “excuse me.. thank you!” And you don’t have to be a dick about it either, that’s the other extreme. Just do so as if you are constantly aware of the sacredness of all of reality that not only includes you, but is you. It’s all you! Keep your shoulders back, look people straight in the eye and delight in the wisdom that we are all in this world in perfect harmony with one another, not in competition.