While we might not like the lesson, everyone we meet and interact with is a teacher.

Teachers come in all kinds of packages. Although we might like our life lessons to be associated with beautiful locations filled with pleasant people who are equally delightful to look at and hang with, this isn’t reality. A fact of real life is that the teachers who really put us to the test are those whom we find annoying throughout our day. These are the folks who say and do things we’d never say or do. Those with traits we so very much dislike. Those who act in ways we find annoying, distasteful, outlandish or basically unacceptable. These are our gurus. They are teaching us lessons about ourselves and life in countless ways.

When our beliefs clash with others, this is when we really have to stop. And then breathe our way to greater acceptance of the other—and dare I suggest, ourselves as well.

Acceptance doesn’t mean we have to like whatever has irked us. Rather, it means we try to recognize it as a sign of suffering and maybe we can see another human working through their own journey, as are we.

In life, we don’t get to connect only with those we think are groovy and cool. Everyday life requires interactions with every kind of person. And each interaction deserves our respect and peaceful response, which might be best displayed by our silence while quietly (and without drama) taking several deep breaths. Not easy. But that’s why Zen—which means “a mind not fixed and open to everything”—is called a “practice.” We practice so that when the moments arrive, maybe we’ll get just a little better each time at being kinder and more understanding of another in this game called life.

This is Silver Disobedience® philosophy. I’m @DianGriesel aka @SilverDisobedience A Perception Analyst who shares my Daily Meditations for other Ageless, Passionate & Curious People.  More info in my profile link to website.