Why? Because in our eagerness to see the light in everyone, and to choose to see others’ ugliness as a mirror of our own unconsciousness, we too often reduce ourselves to doormats. When you’re wired to think out of the box, boundaries don’t come easily.
I had a refresher course in this lesson recently when dealing with a mean client. I was part of a marketing and book launch team, all of whom were brought together because we were described as being “conscious.” This was a requirement of the client, who was positioning herself as a spiritual leader out to financially heal the world. It would prove to be a laughable label, since none of us were consciously aware that we were being taken, that we would spend months on a project that the client decided she’d rather not pay for.
Because of the spiritual aspect of the work, we trusted the client’s integrity and overlooked our typical business protocols, like being paid in advance. And because, as lightworkers, we are skilled at keeping our eyes trained on a higher vision, we failed to see some character flaws the client wasn’t exactly hiding.
Author and Clairvoyant Doreen Virtue, in her book Assertiveness For Earth Angels, describes lightworkers, or earth angels, as sweet sensitive people who put others’ needs before their own. She says we are especially vulnerable to bullies, time-wasters, and users because we confuse being loving with being too nice. We have trouble distinguishing between assertiveness and aggression.
It makes sense that we have confusion and fear around those two traits because…well, because mean people suck and we don’t want to be one. But these times seem to be calling us to risk being judged, by ourselves at least, as “mean” while we try on a new level of assertiveness.
Jose Stevens, psychologist, author, and founder of the Power Path School of Shamanism, writes extensively about the cultural, psychological trends that we can expect in 2017. The main traits for this year are aggression and perseverance. The negative pole of aggression is belligerence, but its polar opposite is dynamism, which is defined as positive, vigorous activity and progress.
So how do all of us softies harness our aggression and become the dynamic, assertive soul warriors we are being called to be? How do we protect ourselves from being damaged by mean people?
Here are some tips:
Continue to give others the benefit of the doubt. Continue to trust and take people at their word. Continue to see the best in everyone around you.
But before you do that, do this: Give yourself the benefit of the doubt. Trust yourself. Make your words direct and loving and stick by them. See the best in yourself and know that, when you act from your heart, there is no meanness involved.
Doreen Virtue says the trick is to take ownership of our own feelings by being honest, first with ourselves, then with God, then with others.
Which means you may have to shine the light on someone’s behavior by saying, “You’re being mean. And that sucks.”