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I’ll be honest. There are a few people I wish would not show up at the holiday gatherings this year. You know the ones: they talk too much, complain too much, drink too much, laugh too loud, and they don’t help with the dishes.

Dangit. It makes me want to avoid gatherings altogether and stay home and binge-watch Christmas movies on the Hallmark Channel. 🤦‍♀️

The trouble with people is… they’re just like me. 

Ouch! That didn’t feel good. (Hang in there, buttercup, it gets better.)

Just a little bit of empathy can go a very long way with people you’re having difficulties with. 

This exercise can be done with someone you barely know or with someone who triggers you left and right. It’s a way to let go of assumptions and focus on what we have in common with others.

Just Like Me Exercise

Bring a person to mind. Focus on the center of your chest or put your hand on your chest, and mentally say to them:

  • This person has a body and a mind, just like me.
  • The person has feelings, emotions, and thoughts, just like me.
  • This person has been sad, disappointed, angry, or hurt, just like me.
  • This person has felt unworthy and inadequate, just like me.
  • This person worries and is frightened sometimes, just like me.
  • This person has longed for friendship, just like me.
  • This person is learning about life, just like me.
  • Keeping them in mind mentally say to them: May you be well, may you be safe, may you be happy!

​You can do this secretly while they’re right there in the room. Or before you arrive. Or any ‘ole time you want.

Try it out!

You’ll feel a lot better and that person you have difficulties with will feel better, too.


(Just Like Me Exercise adapted from Google’s Search Inside Yourself Leadership Institute)

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