I used to believe that I would be able to understand why a person thinks a certain way and as soon as I would get to know them more, once I identified that “one” fact–it would as if everything clicked in my brain and I had solved the puzzle. I would cut-off anyone who would think differently from me, and not bother understanding where they come from. I thought to myself, “why try understanding someone who doesn’t understand me?” I would expect others to understand my beliefs and expect that they treat me the way I treat them.
We are taught to ignore, or steer away from people who don’t understand our minds, and to unite with those who have the same ideologies as our own. But, why is it so difficult to like someone who is different? Aren’t we the kind of people who don’t judge? Aren’t we supposed to accept those who are different and see what similarities we have? How can we expect ourselves to grow, if we are afraid to accept those who think differently?
At this point, you might be thinking, “but I love people for who they are!,” Yes, but more than likely not when they give you criticism for why you are the way you are. Immediately, we take it personally and try our hardest not to explode–”how can you judge me? Look at yourself!”
One of the hardest things I’ve had to learn in my early 20s, is that I can’t continue questioning why people think and are the way they are. This concept was foreign to me,.
I have come to understand that it’s not about understanding a person, but rather accepting that they are how they are, even if it doesn’t make sense to you. Humans today have the worst time communicating. Some of us are excellent at it and can be expressive, direct and clear in our language. Others can be shy, short and beat around the bushes to get to their point.
I, as a very expressive person, born and raised in Miami–have had to learn how to communicate with all kinds of people and to become a better listener. I’ve learned that “bro” and “fire” doesn’t exist outside of Miami.
I never thought that the saying, “first impressions are lasting impressions,” would apply to me. I always thought that as soon as I meet someone, I would be inviting and charming. But some people don’t find it cute and appealing like I would. And honestly, that is okay. I am no one to tell someone what they should think of me and if someone doesn’t agree with what I tink, I open that dialogue and try to understand their point of view. The worst that could happen is that we agree to disagree, but we have accepted our point of views with respect.
Ironically, we live in an age in time where we crave to be judged, but don’t like to be criticized. We post things that get us in trouble or seen in a negative image, but we also post things that boost our morale and confidence. And because we use text as our default form of communicating, we are exposing ourselves to all kinds interpretation.
No matter what you believe is right or wrong, people will always believe in what the want and instead of trying to change their way of thinking, we can try to expose each other to new ways of thinking. It might seem weird at first, but if you allow yourself to be open to interpretation, you will open your mind too.