“People aren’t always what you want them to be. Sometimes they disappoint you or let you down, but you have to give them a chance first. You can’t just meet someone and expect them to be everything you’re looking for and then be angry when they’re not every hope and aspiration you projected onto them. It’s foolish to believe that someone will be what you imagine them to be. And sometimes, when you give them a chance, they turn out to be better than you imagined. Different, but better.”
When we did the Landmark forum, we were told about already listening that is if were to meet, Obama for the first time, I would have this impression about him, maybe that he has this quality, whatever something I conclude about him, say I would have conclude that Obama is bossy person, then all his verbal and non-verbal communication would land in my space as those of a bossy person. The visa-versa would be true.
I noticed this about myself when I was travelling to Udupi. There were a bunch of teenagers, who spoke in very pronounced Delhi language, both verbally and non-verbally. I looked at them and labelled them, “arrogant Delhi Brats” I was rather rude to them.
Our first impression of a person is quite defining. It is also the point where we decide whether someone is worth knowing or not. Particularly if the initial interaction is particularly uncomfortable or challenging. We can decide to close our hearts to this new acquaintance entirely. But being too quick to judge can cause us to lose out on a potentially wonderful, enriching relationship. First impressions don’t always give the complete picture. So if I meet some one who leaves me less than impressed I need to consider giving him a second chance I might be in for a pleasant surprise,
But maybe everyone deserves to given a second chance in life and the opportunity for forgiveness. After all we have our own personal experiences of how painful it can feel to be misunderstood or judged. We have good hearts and want it to be seen and acknowledged. We have so much to offer and we want others to welcome our gifts.
On a personal note when some one shuts me off before they even know who I am, it can feel frustrating, hurtful and confusing. I realize I can ask for that courtesy only if I can extend to others. This probably could be a precedent for all my relationships to allow everyone the freedom and safety to simply be human. It could be anyone, the Brash Delhi Brats, the person next to me on the airplane, the person who recently shifted next door. They could after all dealing with their own burdens, if I have the courtesy to allow them is who they are, and then I will do the same to myself.
If I could listen to my inner knowing, it may advice me to keep a distance, which I can without snarling, I realized that needed me to stop being defensive and assume that everyone is out to get me. And it also needed me to be a little humble and accept that I might be too irrelevant for the person to attack.
No,’ Nico said. ‘Getting a second life is one thing. Making it a better life, that’s the trick.’ As soon as he said it, Nico realized he could’ve been talking about himself. He decided not to bring that up.”
― Rick Riordan, The Blood of Olympus