Dealing With People
We are a social species, which means that other people are at the core of
our very existence. They are the thing that makes life worth living — a
source from which most all of our joy and happiness flows. Unfortunately, the prominent place that fellow humans beings hold in our psychology also means that they will frequently be the cause of our most profound misery and suffering.
The good new is that much of this heartache can be avoided by adopting
better ways of relating to others, especially when they do upsetting
things. This area of our site is dedicated to social intelligence, and will
help you improve your people skills while learning to better manage the
hassles that others through your way.
Many Mirrors on the Wall
Since we never have direct access to someone else’s mind, we’re constantly left guessing at the intent of others. This also means that
we constantly miss-judge people because we assume motives for their behavior that aren’t accurate.
Take, for example, someone who spends a lot of time in front of the mirror. Surly this person must be stuck up and conceited, right? Full of
themselves and in love with their looks? Many would automatically assume this to be true. Yet the reality is that spending a lot of time
gazing at one’s reflections can just as easily be driven by insecurity as opposed to narcissism. It can be an attempt to alleviate anxiety over perceived flaws. So we observe a behavior, come up with our own motive, and end up May forming a view of the situation that is the precise opposite of truth.
Therefore what other people do is really more about what we assume, because it is we, not them, who input the data that spells out what
their behavior means. It’s therefore important to be less judgmental, and remember that there are many mirrors to reflect the person’s behavior through. It’s foolish to assume that our interpretations of their psychology is correct.
More People & Social Skill Resources