“To assume the best about people is almost an inherently selfish act, ’cause the life you change first is your own.”
– Brené Brown
But it can also change the lives of the people around you. You can’t know, without a doubt, if someone (who has been getting on your nerves) is doing their best. But if you can make the assumption that they are doing their best, then you actually feel more acceptance, less judgment, less resentment, and more accepting of your own imperfect, “needy” self, and maybe even recognize that you deserve support, whether any one particular person can give it to you or not.
“Generosity,” says Brené, “can’t exist without boundaries. Empathy without boundaries is not empathy. Boundaries are friggin’ important. It’s here’s what’s okay with me, and here is what’s not.”
Achieving this level of self knowledge often requires a lot of work. But it’s so worth it. Here is a video where Brené is being interviewed about compassion and boundaries. I just love it. Take a look!
Here is her question: What boundaries need to be in place for me to maintain my integrity and make my most generous assumptions about you?