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10.14.2011

some KIND of perspective.

 Be Kind. For everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle. -Plato

Just as you should never judge a book by it's cover, you should never judge a person by a bad first impression. We all have our bad days, one which the worst part of us comes out. There is usually an underlying reason for this, one in which others don't always take into consideration when they witness someone being rude, standoffish, or angry. Consider this: You see a woman screaming at her kids in the grocery store parking lot. The guy in front of you is driving super slow. A woman parked in your reserved spot. Someone cut you off in traffic. The lady in front of you isn't going right on red. Our boss snaps on us. A woman is walking slow in the grocery store and blocking the whole aisle. We listen to a man's rude conversations with the sales clerk.

We've probably all been in situations like these. Our usual reaction is to get frustrated, annoyed, honk our horns, or ride someones tail. We let out loud sighs, mutter under of breath, and might even make a rude comment at someone. It might ruin our day, send us into a tizzy, and cause us to take out our frustrations on someone else, as a result. Talk about paying it forward; "it" being that bad mood. And bad moods are not something to pay forward.


Now let us reread those scenarios:

We see a woman screaming at her kids in the grocery store parking lot because they spent the last hour hitting each other. The guy in front of you is driving super slow because he's on the phone hearing tragic news from a family member. A woman parked in your spot because she was late for a job interview that will make or break her career. Someone cut you off in traffic because their significant other was just admitted into the ER. The lady in front of you isn't going right on red because her friend was paralyzed in a horrific accident doing that. Our boss snaps on us because he just lost a huge business deal. A woman is walking slow in the grocery store blocking the aisle because she has an abusive spouse who's worst side comes out if she forgets anything on the list. We listen to a man's rude conversation with the sales clerk because the gadget she sold him a week before is already busted and his child won't stop crying about it.

Now, had you known that was the underlying issue that person was dealing with, would you have been a little kinder? A little more understanding? A little less apt to get frustrated? A little less likely to get angry?

Sometimes people are dealing with issues in which no outsider would know about nor understand based on a single impression. No one can really understand what would possess someone to act or say the things they do sometimes. The reality is we are all fighting internal battles. We all have moments where nothing seems to go right; points where our exhaustion, sadness, and anger get the best of us. And as a result of trying to cope, we are all guilty of taking this out on others. The truth of the matter is that life is hard. Things happen that turn us into angry balls of fire. All anyone is trying to do is make it through those bad days.

It's important to consider a scenario like the ones that are listed above from both perspectives- Are you the one cutting people off in traffic? Or are you the one being cut off? I think the most unfortunate thing of all is that bad days are contagious- I mean to say, if you are on the receiving end of someone having an awful moment, your day might turn sour as a result of having an interaction with them.

Unfortunately there is no such thing as being able to avoid bad things happening in our lives. But what we can do is try a little harder to be understanding. Don't be so quick to get annoyed or frustrated with someone that seems to just be trying to ruin your day. They probably aren't. In most cases, there is a real reason that person is acting or saying the things they are. Put yourself in their shoes. And by the same token, if you are having a bad day, try you hardest not to pass that on to an innocent bystander. I think with a little more understanding, a little more respect, and a lot more focus on the things that bring us all together (verses pull us apart), we can all battle through the ups and downs of life in a more positive manner.



1 comments:

Digger said...

I LOVE this post! It's so inspiring and speaks right from the heart! Seriously! I had to read it, then reread it to make sure I understood every detail! Thank you for this! Truly!