If you are reading this post, it’s most likely you care for someone other than yourself. And if you care for someone, obviously you want the best for him/her. Let’s say it is a good friend of yours, a wonderful lady, who is under much stress and therefore having health problems. You feel for her, and really would like to help her. Yes, you can take her for a walk, out for lunch or a movie, and that will help. She will get good laughs and a break while being with you, and may feel better for a while, but as soon as she goes back to her routine, her health goes downhill again, and probably her mood, too.
This is tough for you, because you want to help your friend but can’t be there the whole time, since you are not her! For a good friend, it is hard having to sit back and watch the other suffering. You try as best as you can to help, and try not to feel guilty, that is all you can do. We can’t open eyes for our friends, they have to do it themselves. And once you get to the point where you understand the flow of life, or if you don’t understand it, at least you flow well with it, you want to help everybody else feel the same. Well, it’s not that easy. We really need to step back on this one and just pray they will realize what is best for them by themselves. You can present them your way of handling life, but you can’t force them to follow your path, especially because each person has her own.
A fancy word for this “backing off” action I just mentioned is detachment, but it’s more important that you grasp the meaning of it. Learning to be detached is pretty hard, although not impossible. Eventually, you should let go of someone else’s problem, not because you are mean or you don’t care, but because you need to let the other person learn her own lesson, and you also have your own problems to take care of.
Let me give you an example. Think about a teacher and all the students she has in her classroom. One day she gives them a worksheet that is a little harder than usual. While giving them sometime to work on it, the teacher walks around and peeks at what the students are doing. Let’s say she passes by a boy who is getting the whole idea wrong. If she got his paper and just did it correctly for him, he would not have learned how to solve this type of problem. But if she explained how to do it to him, and let him get to the final result by himself, there would be a big chance that boy would learn the lesson. And that’s how we should do with friends, we can show them the way we think will work for them, but they get to choose their own path. Just trust it will work, when the time is appropriate for your friend to grasp the lesson.