Let them be who they are

I believe it was Satre who said “Hell is other people.”

Taken literally, I disagree.

Other people are only as difficult as our refusal to try to understand them.

We hear the things they say, see the things they do, and immediately judge them as good, bad, evil, saintly, greedy, over-the-top… Once that impression is formed, it can be near-impossible to change it. Mostly, we don’t bother changing it.

But if our mistake is closing ourselves off, and clinging tightly to our first impression of people, then the remedy must surely be to do the opposite: open ourselves up and suspend judgement as long as possible.

Every single person you come across is like an undiscovered country. Your lower self wants to pigeon-hole them straight away. Resist this impulse, and simply wonder about them. What makes them tick? What makes them ticked off? How do they change when they’re around different people? What might that mean?

The longer you can delay giving into your temptation to form a fixed, permanent view of the people in your life, the easier you will find it to get along with them.

Or, put simply, let them be who they are.

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