Last year I met an interesting boy. Every time I saw him, he was wearing the same clothing. Same shirt. Same jeans. Same shoes. I didn’t know why, but it bothered me. I could have cared less about the boy’s wardrobe and his dress sense, so why did it irk me?
Eventually, I realised that the problem had zilch to do with him and everything to do with me. The real problem wasn’t, “This boy wears the same clothes every day”, it was, “I don’t have the strength of character to do the same.”
We don’t have problems with other people. Our judgment and subsequent dislike for someone is inversely proportional to our perceived ability to deal with them.
Take a moment to think about the type of people who push your buttons.
Do loud people who always have to be the centre of attention bother you? Why? Perhaps it is due to an underlying desire to improve your social skills and express yourself more effectively. Your ego projects your lack of self-confidence as dislike for the loud person.
Do you dislike aggressive people who try to intimidate others? Why? Maybe it’s because you know you don’t have the balls to stand up for yourself if they were to try to intimidate you. Your ego projects your lack of self-assertion as dislike for the aggressive person.
Do strongly spiritual people irritate you? Why? Maybe you’re jealous that they they have such passion and certainty in their beliefs that they’re willing to centre their lives around their spirituality. Your ego projects your lack of passion as dislike for the spiritual person.
Do you have a problem with atheists? Why? Could it be that you don’t have the courage to look past blind faith and question the validity of religion for yourself? The ego projects your lack of courage as dislike for the atheist.
Instead of looking for reasons why you dislike a person, look for ways you can improve yourself. When you accept yourself, you simultaneously accept everyone else, and vice versa.
What a beautiful world it would be if we could all just accept our fellow humans without judgment.
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