How to deal with selfish housemates

Recently a friend described to me how her housemate had organized for a new tenant to move into her house behind her back, and how the experience of losing her housemate’s trust had both angered and saddened her. 

Feeling this kind of sadness sucks. I think we've all been there. It's great to have someone to talk to in these situations, someone who can offer up the warmth of empathy. But in the heat of the moment, it's hard not to react to ‘narrow-mindedness’. It is hard, hard until you gain awareness that it's the selfish person’s ego, their fear of being vulnerable that's at work creating an ugly mask in their misguided attempt to protect their ego.

People own their intentions, unfortunately a lot of the time we are not aware of our intentions. Some of us are fortunate in that events and our education of life, have already taught us to become aware of our intentions.  To stop and ask, what is this? What is my intention right now? For some, and through no fault of their own, the path to awareness is longer.

I agree it may be helpful for you to express specific resentments as and when you feel them. The key here is that you are not communicating your specific resentment from the same level of awareness. You are communicating from the level of consciousness/awareness, and ego (mean-spiritedness) of the other is communicating back to you from the level of unconsciousness. 

Of course, it’s also possible it has nothing to do with their ego, and the housemate was simply ignorantly unaware of the impact of their actions to the others in the house.

That old maxim holds true whether it’s their ego or their ignorance, and whether you are religious or not: Forgive them for they know not what they do.

Next time you feel you are reacting to someone’s ‘narrow-mindedness’ notice what specific sensations you feel in your body and just stay with those sensations. I've found I can delimit and define discomfort to specific sensations. When my reaction is tangible in physical sensations, it suddenly returns objectivity to me. 

Where are your sensations? Can you describe them using the language of your senses?  e.g. ‘I feel tension across my forehead, my stomach feels like it’s going in, my shoulders feel tight and raised and narrow’.

If you are having problems with people you live with, your best shot of improving the relationship so it's more consciousness to consciousness, being to being, soul to soul, is to not give into the temptation of reverting back to your ego to mirror theirs. If you react unconsciously with passive aggressive avoidance, that undoubtedly will grow their ego and their self-righteousness, but continuing to expose yourself and honestly being you, may attract the human being in them to drop their mask.  Good luck and let me know how you go with this…

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