I noticed that often times we look at people and assume that if they smile it means that their lives are ok. We are inclined to automatically judge someone based on the way they spoke to us, the way they poured our coffee and served a plate at a restaurant. We tend to get angry fast and say things that satisfy our emotions at the moment of anger to give ourselves a relief, without thinking that maybe, just maybe it is not all as it seems.
I am at fault at this too and I try my best to avoid such fast conclusions just because someone isn’t being as bubbly as I expected them to be. I found that we are dissimilar in the way that we express emotions, such as happiness or pain, healing and grieving.
I remember coming across a random post on social media about a person I didn’t k know who recently lost a loved one…and then a month or two later I saw pictures of that very person who was supposed to be grieving (in my mind) at a beach vacationing in Cancun…The first thought that came to mind was “wow…that person is crazy”, maybe she didn’t care….and other verdicts along that line. But then, I thought…what if this is how this person is grieving? What if I judged too soon? What if I’m completely wrong about my perception here? And that is usually how things are—we tend to see situations and assume on auto pilot that a person is immoral or had “lost it” in accordance with our own understanding of the moral codes, the rights and the wrongs.
We really need to train our minds to think of people better and to give them the same benefit of a doubt as we would want for ourselves when we don’t do things right. I try to remember a very good quote: “Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle”,–Ian Maclaren. With getting older and a bit wiser I grew to believe such statement to be true. At times, if you look close enough, behind a person’s smile, you are able to see the sadness in the eyes, the life scars and the dignity they are trying to hold on to. This is true, if we bother to care about others around us a bit more. So choose to be kinder, always…