Love even thy annoying neighbour

Being kind to people who are rude or inconsiderate can be a huge challenge, but with strength and patience it’s possible to build a better world filled with love

Doing everything with love can be hard. Sometimes I don’t respond with love towards my siblings or that friend who drives me crazy. Being surrounded by unhappy and often demanding people makes it all too easy to snap back rudely. Responding with kindness and love can be the last thing on anyone’s mind when their buttons are being pushed.

Yet it builds better communities and ensures a peaceful mind. This doesn’t make it any easier to achieve, though, but it can be taught.

As you go through your day, there will always be that certain thing that sets you off and and sends you into the deep end. Do you know what sort of things make you mad? It could be a friend forgetting your birthday or something as small as finding out that another family member ate the last scoop of your favourite ice cream!

You may not be able to avoid these situations, but if you know your tendency to overreact when these buttons are pushed, you can prepare yourself to respond in a calm manner. Be aware of your triggers and plan a response. See this encounter as an opportunity to practise patience.

The world is full of temptations and obstacles ready to tear us down. Sometimes those challenges hit us out of the blue. Other times they are predictable. By being strong and courageous, we can face these difficult circumstances and people who cross our paths. We don’t need to hide or run away. Nor do we need to be aggressive and rude.

We simply need to summon all our courage, strength and patience to help us respond with love. End the year and go into the future with nothing but love!


Emilie Olifant is a disability activist, entrepreneur and motivational speaker. She is the director of the Emilie Olifant Foundation, an organisation that strives to address socio-economic issues experienced by people with disabilities. email:

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