As we grow up most of us are taught to respect the things that aren’t ours and take care of the things that are. We become comfortable with certain personalities and surroundings. We start to meet new people, some of us follow the path our parents want us to follow and some of us are more curious and we become part of different social circles. This is the beginning of learning to understand and getting along with others.
We will encounter different friendships, some will last a lifetime, others will be short, but full of lessons. We’ll learn to adjust to our new surroundings; we’ll need to learn to understand the new culture, but to fully understand the culture we have to understand its people and this can be quite a challenge for many.
Growing up as a Venezuelan-American, I’ve been pretty lucky to experience 2 cultures simultaneously, which I believe has given me an early advantage in understanding how different people around us can be.
Fast forward to now, and at this point in life I think it’s fair to say my personal intelligence is well on it’s way to becoming more and more developed. I’ve dealt with & surpassed the anger that came from being hurt by outsiders, friends & even family. I believe in giving people the benefit of the doubt until proven otherwise & if you prove me otherwise, be prepared to lose my trust & loyalty. It is what it is.
I’ve also had to learn that some people are just selfish jerks, but I’ve also learned to value myself much more and be okay with being selfish with my own time. Being selfish with your time just means you acknowledge that your time is valuable, therefore you’re not going to waste it on negative people or things.
Look In The Mirror
Take a nice long look in the mirror. What do you think about yourself? Are you proud? Would you say you’re understanding? Are you open minded to other people & cultures? They say that before we can love anyone else we must love ourselves first. Is the person in the mirror someone you love? (Not in a narcissistic type of way).
Looking at ourselves first allows us to self-reflect. Self-reflection is good practice for developing the rest of our skills.
Let’s face it, we all judge, but judge yourself – (look in the mirror) –
before you judge others, When we judge someone we are observing them, but we are observing them according to what our own values or views are.
I remember when I worked in the nightclubs, people automatically assumed things about me. It wasn’t fair that people judged me because of the job. I felt like I constantly needed to prove myself to everyone who tried to judge me. I also accepted the fact that judging is a natural human behavior and we all do it.
Do Unto Others
The basic golden rule. Treat others how you like to be treated. Think about the way you treat people and ask yourself if that were the way you would want to be treated? Think about how you feel when someone treats you inappropriately; now imagine how others would feel? Think about it this way, the person in front of you…is you, so treat them accordingly.
Having an open mind helps you understand that first impressions aren’t everything. From early on most of us are taught that first impressions are everything and we must always be on our best behavior. Guess what? Shit happens and sometimes we’re going to make mistakes.
In fact, sometimes it may not even be a mistake, but just the simple fact they’re an introvert. At first meet, a shy person may come off as stuck up or reserved, but they’re probably just nervous; stay open & give them a fair chance. Same goes for the loud one in the room whom you probably think has a huge ego for being the center of attention. Stay open.
Respect is universal and it goes along way. A lot of people say respect is earned, and I don’t believe in that. We should respect each other at all times. We should also respect
ourselves enough to stand up for ourselves if someone is disrespecting us. We should
respect our family, our partners, our neighbors, strangers, our elders & so forth. If you want people to respect you, be a role model and respect those around you. When you travel respect the place you’re visiting
and it’s people. That includes respecting their background, opinions, feelings, and beliefs. When you’re meeting new people respect and understand the fact that they’re different from you, but they too have feelings & beliefs that are important.
Appreciating the things life has thrown my way has been a learning experience for me. I’m finally comfortable with accepting everything I’ve been through. All the people who have hurt me, all the people who have helped me, and all the things I’ve learned. Learning to appreciate that people are different is what makes the world go-round. Ultimately we all want similar things, more specifically we all want happiness. Appreciating each other’s journeys, beliefs and feelings is a step forward understanding & accepting one another
I’ve lived in really different places throughout my life & I’ve traveled to a variety of places, each teaching me something new about people and cultures. Living in Kuwait, which is completely different than anything I’ve ever been used to, has brought on some challenges. It meant having to make all new friends, understand new personalities & characters, find comfort in the new, and one of the toughest: living with complete strangers.
Over all one of the most valuable things I’ve learned about people is: We are all humans and we are all very different. We all bleed red. We all have a story to tell. We all have our purpose and dreams to follow. We want happiness and success and we want to find our purpose. Understanding people’s personalities isn’t an easy task, but working through the challenges and allowing yourself to grow is what makes it all worth it.