People: can’t live with ’em, can’t live without ’em. It’s almost like someone’s been playing a cruel joke on the human race -- we get only one perspective to peer out of, yet have no choice but to deal with everyone else’s perspectives too.
We only see the world through our own eyes, through our own experiences and through the realities we create for ourselves. We have no choice but to interact with countless individuals who see the world differently. I find it rather impressive that we’re able to accomplish anything of merit.
What’s even more impressive is that we don’t all just kill each other. Hell, we probably would if we hadn’t devised a social construct made up of strict rules and penalties.
It’s nice to think that we could all just get along if we tried really, really hard. But that simply isn’t the case. You won’t get along with everyone no matter how hard you try. You won’t enjoy everyone’s company, nor will you appreciate everyone’s ideas, beliefs and opinions.
As people, we strongly believe that our beliefs are the right ones -- if we thought otherwise then we would be classified as legally insane. You believe what you believe because you believe it to be right and true.
This makes hearing other people’s beliefs frustrating. You "know" that you’re right. So why does everyone else insist on being so wrong?
In reality, there is little in life that isn’t left to interpretation. Most beliefs are merely opinions. Most facts are usually subjective, or only theories. Because most of us believe that anything is possible, we allow ourselves to believe whatever the heck we’d like to believe.
There are arguably very few things of importance in this world that can be proven to be true without a glimmer of a doubt, without the possibility of it being otherwise. People will always stick to their guns and tell you that their opinions are fact and that yours aren’t.
This leads to a lot of frustration, a lot of anger and a lot of arguments. There’s nothing wrong with a healthy debate -- I’m all for it. The problem is that most people allow others to get under their skin and to affect their mood.
Chances are that if you’re having a bad day, it’s because of another person. Or at least, that’s what most people believe. In fact, you’re the reason you’re having such a bad day/week/month/year/life.
There are roughly seven billion people on earth. That’s seven billion perspectives, seven billion different realities and seven billion ways to ruin your day. The solution isn’t to stay away from everyone -- that just isn’t possible.
The solution is to understand where a person is coming from, accepting that they are entitled to their own opinions and beliefs, and to move on with your life like nothing happened. It isn’t your job to convince people that their beliefs are false. That’s not what you're here for.
Your job is to live your life to the best of your ability. Sure, some fights need to be fought, but you need to know how to pick your battles. Most people can’t be convinced that what they think to be true is false because they are stubborn.
They aren’t open to other options or possibilities and feel more comfortable sticking to their beliefs than having to adopt yours. You’re not going to change their perspectives because they don’t want you to. So don’t bother.
One of the greatest tricks to living a happy life is understanding that it isn’t your job to change other people. Learn to deal with people the way they are and life really does become a lot simpler.
And much less frustrating. Sure, half the time you’ll be shaking your head or rolling your eyes -- if only figuratively -- but at least your day won’t be as miserable.
After a while, you’ll learn how to use other people’s flaws or backwards way of thinking to benefit you. Or, maybe you’ll actually find yourself exposed to a new perspective, a new way of thinking and seeing the world.
But you can’t do that if you’re too busy being pissed off all the time. Be kind and listen, but if you disagree then you may need to let it be. Don’t forget that the chances are that they are having a bad day themselves. They’re basically impaired.
Just be and let be, and the sun will always shine.
Photo Courtesy: We Heart It