Enemy is such a harsh word, don’t you think? Sure; there are people you disagree with. But can you really call them your enemies? Well, when people try to lower your morals, hurt you, and bring you down, then yes – we’re talking about enemies. You cannot be loved by everyone, no matter how hard you try.
Look at Anne Hathaway. She’s absolutely perfect. She is beautiful, she is a great actress, and she always has the perfect answers in interviews. Still, the public hatred burst against her has been going on for years. This happens to everyone – some people don’t like us and we can’t see a particular reason.
But you know what? You can learn from these episodes of hatred directed your way.
- Enemies Teach You the Most Important Lesson: You’re Far from Perfect
Let’s say you posted something on Reddit. You just expressed an opinion, but it offended someone. Then, the hate started pouring in. You’re getting comments from people you don’t even know. They put all your flaws under a microscope. People are brave like that, especially when acting from behind a screen.
How do you respond to this?
- You may ignore this criticism. You may continue living in your perfect little world, thinking you’re perfect and the haters don’t understand you. Or:
- Recognize your own flaws and work on them. We’re not saying you should be hurt by comments that trolls post on your Instagram selfies. We’re just saying that when someone stands up as a real enemy, you should search for the reason behind that attitude. You’ll find that you’re not perfect. That’s the first lesson to learn.
- “An Elevated Spirit is Weak and a Low Spirit Is Weak.”
That’s a quote by Miyamoto Musashi, a legendary Japanese samurai. He added something to it: “Do not let the enemy see your spirit.”
When you get in a discussion with someone who criticizes you, you may heat up and show an elevated spirit. You’ll yell, you’ll offend… you’ll just give them more reasons to hate you. You might also start crying and show all your weaknesses. That’s equally as bad.
The way of the warrior is pretty clear: you should stay focused in your intentions. In discussions, you must lay out your arguments in a calm, confident manner, without really showing your spirit.
- They Test Your Limits
Do you consider yourself to be a kind and loving person? Well, enemies test your limits. If you find it difficult to forgive them, then you’re not as loving as you thought you were. Enemies teach you about unconditional love. If you can truly forgive and let the past go, you’re working towards a better self.
- They Reflect Your Flaws
Maybe you’re the one who hates. You dislike someone although they didn’t do anything wrong. It’s probably because you see them as similar to yourself in one way or another.
“If you hate a person, you hate something in him that is part of yourself.”
That was Hermann Hesse. Those are not just words; it’s a great truth that forces you to dig deep into your thoughts and emotions towards someone.
- They Teach You about Forgiveness
Can you really, truly forgive? Forgiveness is not for the sake of being likeable. It’s for the sake of doing good for other people and for yourself. It’s about closing a chapter and moving on. If you can forgive an enemy for hurting you badly, you can congratulate yourself for becoming a better person.
Some people don’t like you. It may be your mother in law, it may be your boss, or it may be that colleague who always plays tricks on you. No matter how hard you try to change this, you can’t.
You must simply accept it as a fact: “Not everyone likes me and I’m okay with that. I should just be my true self.” That’s an important lesson to learn, don’t you think?
- Dealing with Negative Feelings
The mere thought about your “enemies” probably triggers feelings of anger. You may allow those feelings to overcome you, or you might take a different, more positive direction.