Recently I had a huge realization that someone I had been antagonizing constantly was just human. Just like you or I, this person had a heart and had many of the same values as I had. I had held onto a grudge for too long, making me resentful of this person’s mere presence. When we actually opened up to each other, I realized that I hated an idea I created in my mind of this person not this actual person. I had been creating a monster out of someone who was actually a person I value so highly and am so glad is in my life.
This new understanding and appreciation I had for this person made me realize that maybe we all are too harsh on people in our lives. Maybe we should wonder why we feel negative feelings toward certain people every time those feelings come up. Given, there are definitely people in this world who deserve to be hated. But, there are plenty of people that we really just need to see at more angles to understand the whole picture.
We often have expectations for people and allow these expectations to come to conclusions that may or may not be the best. It is easy to assume that every person’s personality is cut and dry, but in fact every person is an onion full of layers, not just ogres. Many people have a lot going on in their lives that they don’t share publicly, stuff that can be really hard and often affect behavior towards others.
More often than not when someone gets mad at you or says something simple-minded or mean, it is probably because of something that has nothing to do with you at all. I often think to myself don’t think say something about someone that you wouldn’t want to be said about you. For example, as a liberal I automatically become sceptical when someone claims to have conservative viewpoints. Sometimes, if I give that person a chance, I am able to see that our opinions aren’t as different as we think and we are all just trying to do our best in creating the opinions we have with the little knowledge we have obtained in our lives.
This may not work in all cases, like if that conservative also discriminates against people different than them. Yet, allowing more leeway for others in your life will allow you to loosen up the expectations on yourself. Thus, not only transforming a hatred into a friendship, but also helping accept yourself in the end.
Overall, I am not trying to say that everyone should stop hate. Some hate is definitely necessary. However, many of the people that we cut out of our lives for one reason or another are good people. They just have flaws like all of us. Next time you see that one person you hate or make an negative assumption about a someone you don’t know that well, remember that everyone is human and makes mistakes.