So many times people pick and choose who they want to like and who they want to not like. Isn’t that right? We’ve all done it to some extent, haven’t we? We may see a person, whom we never met, and within seconds, size them up to be a person we just don’t like. We have no particular reason other than to tell ourselves that we just don’t like their face or that there is ‘something’ about that person that we just don’t like. Why do we do this? Why do we label some people as ‘not acceptable’ without even getting to know them?
Of course, there are hundreds of reasons why we actually do this. Maybe we’re intimidated by them, or maybe they remind us of someone who has hurt us in the past, or maybe they remind us of ourselves and what we’re trying to run away from. Or possibly they see us as a threat to their egos. The reasons are endless. And just to state for the record, I believe that we are all guilty of this at some point in our lives.
Throughout my life, I have done this to people. I’ve judged them before knowing them, and usually I was wrong. I’ve become very good friends with several of the people who I’ve misjudged, and I am thankful that I found out about how great they really are. On the flipside of this, I have been the victim of being judged. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve been shunned by people who didn’t know me, but took an immediate dislike to me. And make no mistake about it that it was clearly obvious that they didn’t like me simply by how they treated me. This was and is very disturbing. Dozens of questions would smother me, wanting answers: What did I do? Did I say something wrong? Did I come off as a snob? Did I look at them cross-eyed? Was my hair not long enough, short enough, what? Tell me, somebody, anybody, what did I do?
I know many friends who are currently divorced. Many of them told me identical stories; that their spouse was ‘looking’ for a reason to leave them. The spouse would pick fights at the drop of a dime. They wanted out and looked for reasons to get out. They weren’t brave enough to go to the woman and tell her what was on his mind. Instead, he chose a cowardly way to do it. He found fault in every thing she did. He wanted to fight. He wanted to have a reason, and because he was wanting to leave, he saw his actions as justified. And he left.
The same thing holds true for relationships and friendships. Have you ever been in a situation where you just knew in your heart that a friend really didn’t want to be friends with you? Think about that. You may have done nothing wrong to them. In fact, you did everything a friend could do to prove your friendship, yet, this person was clearly keeping you around ‘just in case’. And then one day, you say one thing wrong, one tiny statement that just sends this person into orbit, and without giving you a reason why, they dismiss you, just like that. You try to talk to them to find out why your statement affected them the way that it did, but they refuse to talk to you–they refuse to acknowledge you. It’s almost as if they’re happy that you’re not friends. They found the excuse that they were hoping to find in order to cut the cord, and they aren’t going to let you back in; because they never really wanted you there in the first place. Has that ever happen to you?
Well, I say this with a heavy heart, but it’s happened to me, and is still happening. And no matter what I have tried, there are those few that just don’t like me. So I gave it great thought. And I prayed upon it, asking God for answers. I wanted to know why I was failing when I was doing my best to succeed? And I received my answers, which for me, works.
I can state stale cliches: there’s a lid for every pot, or win some lose some; but I won’t. I’m only going to say that judging others without knowing them is selling ourselves short. There are wonderful people to know, who’ve so much to offer in terms of love, knowledge, and compassion. You want to know what I really think? I think we misjudge others who threaten our egos. Those people who are rich, successful, talented, and well loved make us face what we aren’t, and that’s why we shun them.
Okay. Today is a new day. And I want to like all the people I meet. And even though that might not happen, and even though they may not like me, I’m going to put my best foot forward and keep an open mind and an open heart. I’m stepping up to the plate by saying that for those who don’t know me, who’ve misjudged me by my cover, I am still smiling, regardless if you like me or not.
Take the first step to loving yourself. We are good people. Every one of us is good. Give someone a break. Stop being so judgemental and ask yourself this: Am I a good person? Am I reallllllly a good person? I think you’ll get an honest answer that you might be ashamed to admit.