Sunday, May 2, 2010

people from that box

i like to think that i'm pretty good at figuring people out. i pride myself, mostly secretly because no one really likes people who pride themselves, in my ability to identify peoples motives, goals, and general tendencies, fairly early in the game. this type of intuition is very convenient to have, but, as i've been learning more and more, it is never, regardless of my incredible abilities of interpretation, a good thing to put people in a box before you actually know them.

(i do realize that this is taking on a sort of "don't judge a book by its cover, " children's story sort of theme, but apparently i need to go back and read some of those again.)

when i do this, this sick sort of people-filing, i'm really just hurting myself.

for instance, a lot of people get thrown into the "we'll never understand each other and so there's nothing to be gained from a relationship there" box. i don't really do it consciously - it just happens. how the person gets in the box is irrelevant. what does matter is that they get there, and usually stay there for far too long. it's problematic because i am indifferent to, or even avoid the people in this box - irritated by the hopelessness of the space between us. it's embarrassing to admit because, as i mentioned above, judgement is passed swiftly, and usually based on very little information.

over and over again, people from that box surprise me.

and of course they do.


because no one belongs there.

[exasperated sigh.]

this is one of those self-bettering truths that i often wish weren't so. i wish that there were some people with whom a relationship would hold absolutely no potential growth for anyone. that'd make life easier. there would be no guilt or self-sabotage in avoiding them. however, that's not the case. everyone has something to offer - a perspective that is, though perhaps completely different and uninteresting, or even maddening, one that will challenge our own to be more fully claimed or altered - both good things.

plus, i heard on the radio that interacting with people who challenge you on a regular basis actually helps prevent dementia, so there you go.

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