3 Very Useful Observations About People

I have had the privilege of having two incredible friends over the last decade plus. These two men are intelligent, honourable, and are always willing to take personal inventory in order to improve themselves. We share our daily faith, life, family, work, business, thoughts and experiences. We share each other’s dealings with different people, learning from them, and we love to bounce every thought, new knowledge or experience inquired or acquired off of each other.

I hope and pray that you are blessed with friends like this also, and if not, well… we now have like- minded communities on the net, don’t we?

Three observations that my two friends picked out from our experiences have helped me a great deal in coping with the complexity and frustration of human interactions. If you can’t understand sometimes why a family member, boss, co-worker, partner, friend, business associate, prospective customer, etc. act the way that they do sometimes, then, you’ll love and benefit from these three simple observations.

1 People who profess certain moral traits are certain not to possess them.

If you know someone for let’s say, honesty, because you have witnessed how they have conducted themselves in various situations, and time and time again they have proven to be honest when they could have gone the other way, then this is most likely a known fact in that person’s sphere of influence.
If someone is praised by many who are close witnesses to their honesty, then those many opinions should be given the benefit of the doubt and be trusted.
If, on the other hand, someone personally tells you how honest they are, and keeps bringing it up while dealing with you, then you should be able to guess at the truth.
People who are honest do not have to go around telling people that they are.

2 People generally hate in other people what they hate about themselves.

We all probably have a friend who is always late, however, they cannot tolerate lateness from others. Have you found this to be true? We all have blind spots, are you like that with some things in your life?
To make this point a little clearer, there was a politician on the right, who before he was caught soliciting the services of a male prostitute, he spearheaded anti- gay rights issues. A politician on the left, who was caught spending multiple tens of thousands of taxpayer money on prostitution the previous year was previously a champion of anti-prostitution legislation.
Please don’t take this out of context. I’m pointing this out only to place into your mind a little healthy watchfulness, so that the next time someone is denouncing someone else’s character flaws, that you consider that they just might have the exact challenge.

3 People treat or deal with other people in a way that they see themselves behaving.

Ever meet someone in, let’s say, in a business setting who is constantly questioning your motives and integrity? They may even be subtle about it with tiny comments jabbing out here and there. You’re standing there thinking, ‘what have I done wrong? What more do I need to do to earn this person’s trust? And lastly, wait a minute… haven’t I done enough already?’ Doubting yourself? Confused a little by this situation? If you were open, and from the beginning (because this is who you are) worked to create a win-win situation, then you are not the problem.
This person is seeing you in the light of how they see themselves. They question you, perhaps, because they should be questioned. They see you as untrustworthy because they simply do not have the capacity to fathom that someone else would deal with them honesty, because they sure wouldn’t.

The more we learn about ourselves and then others, the calmer, more rational, and more caring we can become in interacting with different people. Complexity washes away, and the relationships can either be identified as incredibly enriching to pursue, or as enjoyable learning lessons. The frustration and hurt fades away, because even a bad example can be a learning example.


Leave a comment