If your goal is to help people change, proceed with caution.
We Are Our Choices. Aren’t We?
Do we attach who we are to what we do.?
We come in different heights, different colors, and from different cultures, but for the most part, fundamentally, we’re pretty much the same. The things that separate us are the choices we make; the way we raise our kids, the foods we eat or don’t eat, the party with which we vote, what we spend our money on, what we place our faith in or religion we believe, etc. All of those things are very personal, so when they are spoken about in a manner that is reckless or that feels like an attack, the reason people shut down so easily is because they attach those choices to who they fundamentally are. The reason people are offended, hurt, or feel attacked when their choices are questioned or made fun of is because they believe that they are what they choose.
When you’re trying to help someone, the manner in which you handle those topics with people, is a direct correlation to the way they will receive what you are saying to them, even if a change would improve their life experience. To be heard, come from a place of understanding, empathy, and help people separate their decisions from who they are. A bad decision or bad habit does not define the whole of a person; we are more than what we choose.