Most of us can think of one or more people in our lives we’d rather avoid. You know—that person you feel uncomfortable with, perhaps someone who never listens to you, or is arrogant.

In our large Italian family we had such a person, now long gone. He was not typical of our warm, loving family.

I avoided him as much as I could. When I couldn’t avoid him, I could never get away from him fast enough.

When I look back over the years with the 20/20 vision of hindsight, I realize this guy was in deep pain. He didn’t like others because he didn’t like himself. He criticized others because he criticized himself. He was angry with others because he was angry with himself. He rarely saw good in others because he saw none in himself.

I now see this embittered, miserable soul with love and compassion. He was a great teacher for his family. He was a catalyst for growth. He helped me realize my thoughts are what make me happy or unhappy, not the people I am with.

He taught me how to stay in my power.

Have you had similar experiences? Please comment below.

John Cali’s Spirit Speaks Newsletter