How not to be a loser

Why do we walk around acting like we know people, but then get offended when people act like they know us?

There is so much about people that we cannot see. In fact, I think that most of what makes someone “someone” is invisible at first. We cannot see all that someone is carrying around with them. Are they the primary caregiver of their demented mother? Are they struggling to pay their own way through an education they aren’t even sure about? Are they cancer survivors, only children? Did their dog die this morning? Did they get a promotion? Did they get married last week or get approved for a loan before coming to the grocery store? Are they happy or hurting, colorblind or half deaf?

We don’t know.

But we act like we do.

We assume, when crossing paths with a stranger, that we are catching them in a good mood on a good day in a good life. But the reality is that we can never see the heavy things, or even the bubbly light things, at first glance.

Some may say I’m too sympathetic, that I pity too quickly and let people off the hook too easily. But what good does it do me to get pissed at the person who cut me off, the cashier who never spoke a word and rolled her eyes, the soccer mom who took up half the cereal aisle with her buggy, the old man who skipped me in the post office, or the teeny bopper who took too long to order? Why should I be criticized for letting them off the hook? Do they deserve some kind of grudge? Couldn’t giving them the benefit of the doubt only do good for me? 
We are so quick to say, “get off my tail asshole!” , “she didn’t even say hi? What a shitty cashier”, or “ugh freshman”, but guess who loses in these situations? Not the asshole. Not the cashier. Not the freshman. You.

Don’t be a loser, and don’t forget you don’t know everyone. Give someone the benefit of the doubt, not because they deserve it, but because you don’t know if they do or not.

Carry on.

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