It was damp. The snow had turned to rain and puddles were starting to form.
I walked down the hill and approached an intersection and stopped to wait for an approaching car. It seemed to be heading a little too quickly down that particular road, and turned right in front of me. That was legal and more efficient, the car had no obligation to stop for me, though most vehicles would have.
The car kept its speed into the turn and snow splashed off the vehicle in my direction. It did so only because of the turning velocity, it was just loose snow falling off.
But I felt like it was a personal affront. The speed and throwing snow indicated to me that this person was angry, and even angry at me.
My reaction is ridiculous on an intellectual level. The speed had nothing to do with me. The snow flung in my direction also had nothing to do with me. But my ego was at work, making it all about me!!
While it was harmless in this instance, sometimes making it about me is harmful. I have only recently started to play with the skill of checking my assumptions. “I sense that you are mad at me, is that true? It looks to me like this situation is stressful for you, is that true for you? I sense you think that I am being untruthful, is that true?” I am an infant at this skill, but I can see its power and look forward to getting better. If I always assume that the thing isn’t about me, then I may miss when it is! But if I check, well then I might get a little closer to the truth of what’s happening.