About ten years back, I happened to meet a subordinate at my new workplace, who was well known for some of his bad traits. Most of the people had a poor opinion of him. This was the reason they were afraid of him and used to avoid him. In reality, he was an awful person but I never tried to avoid him but instead I decided to make best use of him in spite of his bad traits. I never showed any aversion or contempt to him at any time as a result of which he started to co-operate with me. Gradually, I learnt that he had some good traits as well. In fact, he proved to be a good teacher to me. I learned from him how to tolerate his bad traits and how to make use of his good traits to manage the things properly. He taught me a good lesson of tolerance. He also taught me a lesson in the skills of inter-personal management. Though I have retired from the job a few years back, the lessons I learnt from him are still useful to me. I always feel grateful to him as he taught me a valuable lesson.


It is a human nature to shun a bad person, situation or circumstance. Whenever we have to face such a person or thing, we consider ourselves unfortunate and become unhappy. It is true that such a person or a situation causes lot of stress and anxiety but it is equally true that it offers us wonderful lessons to learn.


Similarly, if a person develops a cancer, he becomes very worried and thinks that it is the end of the world for him. If he relaxes and becomes calm, he will realize that the disease has inherent lessons for him. He will realize that if he takes the expert advice and learns more about his illness, he will be able to manage it better. He will also realize that if he improves his general immunity and joins the community of persons suffering from the same illness, he will handle it better. The deadly disease of cancer will teach him a lesson of tolerance and importance of family and community help.


If we get stuck up in a traffic jam, we get so stressful and tense. Our blood pressure shoots up. But this bad situation of traffic jam can also teach a lesson of tolerance. It can be a time when we can do meditation or listen to our favorite music or work on our laptop. If we express our gratitude to the Almighty for testing us whenever we are face to face with an awful situation, we will become peaceful and be able to handle the situation better.


It depends upon the perception of an individual if an event, circumstance or person is bad. If a bad-appearing event gives a favorable outcome after a period of time, then it becomes good. So, in fact, an event or a circumstance or a person is an event or a circumstance or a person only but our perception forces us to label it as good or bad. Our perceptions keep on changing from time to time but the event, circumstance or person remains the same.


There are some situations which are really bad like a serious accident causing a disability or the untimely death of a loved one. Such situations are quite difficult to handle and overcome. But they too have a lot to teach us. They enhance our capacity of forbearance. If we are spiritual, they will reinforce our faith in the Almighty. If not spiritual, they may help us to embark upon a journey into the land of spirituality.


It is only a matter of our change of perception of something or someone. By developing the positiveness, one can learn a lot from bad persons or situations. So let not shun them. Let us befriend them.


Someone has very aptly said - If you can’t handle me at my worst you don’t deserve me at my best.