As we walk by, we come across people. Even if we’re not looking for them on purpose, maybe even trying to avoid them, they still pop up. At some point, interaction is inevitable. And then, we lift our head from the ground (or wake up from our thoughts) and, before any words are spoken, we – consciously or not – assign a box. Like: “OMG, you’re so ugly” or “OMG, you look amazing”, or “OMG, I would do that and that to you” and even “Why are you talking to me, you don’t know me, go away”.
Unfortunately, that’s humanity now. We can’t just think “You’re a human being, let’s make acquaintances”, because that would make us have a vulnerable image of ourselves. So it’s easier to believe we know the story behind a face. We don’t realize we meet no one by chances, but with the clear purpose of learning something meant to benefit us (and them, maybe).
I usually try hard to avoid judgement, but realizing the story below even shocked me.
I run into a woman in my neighborhood pretty often. Never talked to each other more than “Hi”. One evening, circumstances brought us standing next to each other, on the same bench, in the park. We also have a common friend. I used to think of her “She’s the type of mother who doesn’t give a damn on her child’s education, she only sits on that bench and scrolls Facebook pages up and down, gossiping about others, while her kid goes around and curses everyone”. Well, that’s the image she displays. So, we only interpret an image, not what’s beyond it.
Now, under the given circumstances, we had to politely interact. In the first place, I wouldn’t open my mouth for more than that, but observe her only. As she talked, I realized how we people are in such a hurry to place a sticker. I felt guilty, as I have been doing it too.
Interacting with someone can, actually, turn the tables in regards to one’s perception.
So, I set myself a new goal: to do this with everyone – loose the predefined judgement (we all do this, either we admit it or not) and just talk to people; fairly “practice what you preach”; learn to give everyone a chance to unveil their true colors. Before I jump to conclusions, thinking I know a story!