Life is one big learning experience and I truly believe we continue to keep learning until we take our last mortal breath. Having an open mind and being able to re-analyze old belief systems and creeds you adopted long ago is also important. As we learn, live and evolve we need to be open to change and new wisdom as it arises. Hence, this story I am about to tell….

I learned a good lesson last weekend while up in Detroit. I was out with friends enjoying the evening at a local establishment when our group of friends began delving into conversation with another friendly group. I have this natural and continually evolving ability to read people; I can read their body language, how they talk and represent themselves verbally and I can even sense the energy of others.

Across the table were three young men among a coed group and it was clear each had their carved niche within the social structure of this group dynamic. For the most part, men are very easy to read. I can tell almost immediately how a person gains their confidence and energy – do they find it within or do they steal it from others further empowering their ego facilities? Have you ever been intuitive to this type of energy? There was one guy that was all about ego. He was well-built, dressed nice but as soon as he opened his mouth you could easily tell he was full of himself. His body language told the same tale. There was another guy that seemed popular to the crowd but more grounded than the first. The third person was by far the smartest and most cerebral but he was not as charismatic and gregarious as the other two. You could tell he had low self-esteem and gained his confidence by drawing on the ego and energy of his fellow friends. At one point during a conversation, his egotistical friend said something that was demeaning to the fellow with low self-esteem. I kind of felt bad for him.

Later two of the guys left and then there was just the young man with the low self-esteem among a group of other people just chatting. A bit later I befriended him and soon after took him aside and brought up a couple of observations – He was intrigued by my detailed account of each of his friends and pressed me further for more introspection. This is when I should have defused the conversation and changed the subject. Instead I explained why this guy’s energy was low; how I could read his poor self-esteem by how he talked and carried himself. I even explained it was the dude with the ego who continually drained this nice kid of any energy and control. Further this kid was feeding the egos of his friends and finding his own self-gratification for being allowed to remain in this group dynamic. But at what expense? I could tell this guy worked really hard to be friends with the more charismatic guys of the group but you could tell they did not return the favor. It was actually kind sad and I pushed forward explaining how he could gain all of his energy from within – from his True Nature; that there was another more positive path. Further, I explained that he needed to love himself first in order for people to love and respect him in return. I think the whole conversation hit him like a brick – I could tell I shattered his false sense of order and I probably ruined his night on top of it… Now, I felt worse for him… The truth can hurt; especially when you live behind ego and lies – many times unknowingly.

I tell this tale because as a healer and teacher, I am still learning how to properly approach people and attempt to help without hindering. I speak of wisdom and enlightenment within my blog and book but I am really no different from anyone else. We are all human and we all make mistakes. I am sure I awoke this kid up to a whole new perspective. The problem is, I will never see this guy again and his new realization if not properly nurtured could continue to promote negativity instead of positivity. I may have made things worse. In these situations it is best to nurture wisdom instead of the jarring realization I showered down on his head in a matter of twenty minutes.

There is a fine line to walk when analyzing people’s emotions, ego and energy. Compassion should be the underlying force when trying to help others. Observations are good but some interpretations should be kept silent. Many times, living by example is the best policy forward. I am coming to the realization that people need to approach me – not the opposite. We all need to find our center, shed that ego and be as authentic as possible. It is an emotional and personal process and in hindsight I would have handled things differently.

Here is a little twist to this story – The people I am talking about were not men; they were women. Within both genders one can find the same type of ego dynamic as well as the dominant and recessive energy exchange seen in public and especially in relationships.

As my Father once said, if you do not remember your mistakes you will set yourself up to make the same mistake again. I think I will take heed from his advice.

John C. Bader