“Don’t judge a book by it’s cover”
I’ve heard this thrown around so much, and yet I don’t think it could be more true. I believe I know people when I only know their blurb. There’s a whole novel leading up to where they are now. Even with people I would consider close to me, I would only say I have skimmed their book at best.
Why have I been reading the blurb?
Excellent question, thanks for asking. It takes less effort.
I forget that everyone is complicated, not only me. I silo people into personality groups rather than trying to know them.
A few years ago, it became clear to me that noone liked me. The majority of conversations I had would end up in arguments.
I wonder why?
It turns out that when you don’t understand something, it will frustrate you. It’s the same reason why many people get frustrated with technology. As a software engineer, I have a decent understanding of technology. I have noticed I’m much more tolerating of bugs and response times than those around me.
Since that turning point, I have worked hard on my social intelligence. I’ve gotten a lot better at articulating myself and understanding others. As a result, the majority of my interactions are now positive instead of negative. Life requires much less effort. The very thing I was avoiding due to effort, was the very thing causing the major difficulties in my life.
On reflection, this all sounds a bit silly and straightforward, but I was so wrapped up in myself. I couldn’t see the bigger picture.
I was too busy with my own book of life. Re-reading it and writing what was to come. I never stopped to read anyone else’s book. And guess what? Everyone has a damn interesting life. Much more interesting than mine, because I’ve already read mine.
I’ve paid the price for my mistakes. I’ve caused friction with family, friends, colleagues, and partner. I’m still nowhere near perfect. At least now, when I see that friction arise, I might just remember to take a step back. Try to see things from their perspective.
I wrote this article for a series my partner and I are doing called: Prompt of the Week.
Each week we draw a prompt out of our jar and write an article about it. We read each other’s article then record a podcast discussing our thoughts.
This week’s prompt was: Perspective
My partner’s take on the prompt: https://firstname.lastname@example.org/your-outlook-is-everything-2b728309438d