Being misunderstood is easy. It’s also easy to misunderstand people. The other day I was thinking to myself, if we all walked in each other’s shoes, we’d all know what the hell each other is doing.
The fact of the matter is that we cannot physically walk in the shoes of another person. Alright, well of course we can put them on if they fit, but we won’t ever know what it is like to be another person. The best that we can try to do is listen, feel, and live and let live. It doesn’t necessarily mean that we have to agree or love the choices that other people make, but there probably is a reason why people do what they do, whether it makes sense to us or not.
I’ll be paraphrasing now, but I remember much about the most important book I ever read. It was How to Win Friends and Influence People by Dale Carnegie. One of my favorite parts is when Dale points out how we would be exactly like another person if we were in their shoes from the start of the journey. In other words, people make their decisions based on many factors in their lives. If we were in their place, it’s likely (if not certain) that we would be the same person they are.
This means having their brain, their upbringing, their support system, and so on. How could we vary? We would be that person. Instead, we are us. And we are different. And different is good.
We cannot physically know what it’s like to be another person. I detest the arguments people use in certain situations. “You’ll never know what it’s like to carry around a baby in your stomach,” some will say to men. And it’s true. And you’ll never know what it’s like to be a man, to have man parts, to have my name, to know men problems, and so on.