My jerk-ish behaviour is usually fuelled by one of two things – emotion or alcohol. Worst case scenario: both.
I have been a monumental jerk to every member of my family, most of my friends and all of my partners. Sometimes I have been a douchebag to my bosses and colleagues. I would drown in shame if I had to catalogue every incident where I’ve behaved badly.
The only upside of this is that I now give other people a lot of leeway because – let’s face it – we’re all jerks occasionally. Sometimes in response to others’ behaviour and sometimes we just freestyle our way into hurting people and stepping on toes.
Which means one thing: forgiveness. When someone is a jerk to you, sit back and think about all the people who have forgiven you over the years. Look at the bigger picture. Contextualise their crappy behaviour. Important relationships recover, reconfigure and we all end up becoming better, smarter, kinder people.