Are You Walking a Mile in Too Many Other People's Shoes?
It's time to walk in your own
We’ve been told to walk a mile in other people’s shoes so often that we’re overdoing it.
We’re getting mental blisters, corns on our toes, and cracked heels, wearing other people’s shoes for too long.
It’s time to walk in our own.
The figurative meaning of walking a mile in another’s shoes is to understand their situation (gain empathy) and have the desire to help (express compassion), rather than making snap judgments about that person. Having empathy and compassion is wonderful. It can stop arguments, fistfights, riots, and wars.
But these days when we walk in another’s shoes, we’re tending to experience envy (wanting what that person has) or jealousy (resenting what that person is or has). Or we’re just plain disgruntled.
We don’t literally put other people’s shoes on. We watch their figurative footwear on social media or TV or in films. We follow in their footsteps for years, wishing we were them as they pose, go on holiday, shake hands with influencers, lounge on luxury yachts, sit on thrones, or make multi-million-dollar donations.
In other words, we’re grumpy with the shoes that life has shod us with. We don’t want to walk in our own shoes.
We don’t want to see our feet inside battered work boots. We want to wear Prada.
We don’t want to live in the suburbs. We want a white-washed house on a hillside in Corfu.
We don’t want to eat meatloaf and coleslaw. We want to dine on Coq Au Vin with Wild Asparagus Salad.
Spending our life watching other people spend theirs gets us nowhere.
If we walk in someone else’s shoes, make sure it’s because we want to understand their situation and find out what we can do to help. Don’t walk in someone else’s shoes to make us discontent with ours.
Feel your feet in your shoes.
Take conscious footsteps.
Only you can live your life.
And remember this:
If you are walking fully in your shoes, you don’t need to walk in anyone else’s.
Your depth of consciousness includes them.
The All - the Oneness - is held in what the non-dual teacher David Bingham calls the 'infinite field of consciousness.’
When you walk consciously in your own shoes, you are including everyone else.
With love, Marlane