Getting Along With Others…
It is no easy task to get along with all the people we interact with on a daily basis. We know consciously, that we do not have to like everyone, but we also have a subconscious belief that is deeply within us of wanting others to like us. Part of self-love and growth is not letting this belief control your self-expression, but there is no completely ridding yourself of this because it is a basis psychological needs as we just found out with the help of Abraham Maslow, but what can we do to do more than just tolerate people that rub us the wrong way?
Remember that people are players in our lives.
Because people are here to teach us. When someone bothers you, it raises an emotion within you. What are those emotions?
They are our best friends! Not really, but they are your greatest teachers. When someone brothers us it is because they triggered something that bothers us about ourselves and goes against a value we have. For me, when someone blatantly lies to me, it gets me fired up. I do not like lying and I do not see a point to it. I understand on the logical level that people may feel a lie is not harmful or even helps them in some way, but I do not care to be blunt. Honesty is a strong value of mine. I can see for one that when a person lies, I am angry due to it going against a value, but that is not the other reason. We strive for perfection as humans especially in something we value. Can I say that I never lie? No, and that makes me cringe as I write this, but “white lies” are still lies. I can justify them to myself such as if someone asks something I do not want to hurt their feelings. You know the comments I mean. “Do you like me shirt? Isn’t my baby the cutest? Did you have fun at my party the other night? Do you think I have lost weight?” Part of the “white lies” in my justification is that I do not want to hurt someone else’s feelings especially that I care about, but does it make it right?
That is up to the individual. For me, I need to know that when I have the reaction for someone lying that I am not perfect either. I am not excusing the behavior or mine, but identifying the situation of their circumstances for lying are unknown for me. I am also seeing that because this person lied, they are showing me something within me that needs attention. They are my greatest teachers. People do not irritate others for no reason. Your reaction of the event is an invitation to look at why the reaction occurred that way. We also touched on the idea that when something occurs we do not know the situation.
This is a beautiful concept. Let me ask, when someone you are having a conversation with keeps checking their phone, what is your reaction? Do you feel like you do not matter or they are not interested in what you are saying, or they are just simply being rude?
Have you stopped and thought about what their reason for checking their phone could be? The answer is “no,” we normally come up with a judgement and do not take time to think about their situation. Now, if you are out to coffee with a friend and you check your phone while in the middle of a conversation, what are your thoughts? Are you checking it because you are waiting on a reply from someone, checking if the baby sitter reached out, received an alert that someone is at your front door and you are concerned as to why?
Yes, if someone asked me why I was checking my phone, I would not say, “because I am simply being rude.” I would answer about why I was checking my phone.
This is backwards! We can justify our own behaviors easily, but if someone does that same thing or even something that bothers us, we immediately go to the judgement about them being inconsiderate in some way. Guess what?! This is called the Fundamental Attribution Error. It is a physiological phenomenon where we perceive others actions and behaviors as a defect of tehri character rather than taking the situation into account. With ourselves we are able to recognize the power of the circumstance that our behavior stems from.
People’s lives are way more complex than they appear on the outside. People have many things going on in their lives and often their behaviors represent that. We are quick to judge them and make statements to others. Gossip goes back to the psychological principles of wanting to be connected to others, for others to like us, and acceptance. We gossip about other people to connect with another based on a behavior we believe is outside of acceptable.
Gossip does have a stigma. I have had many clients and personally have made efforts to not gossip. The only thing that truly made me think before I spoke was this simple truth. When you are telling an individual about what behaviors someone did you feel like is inappropriate, that individual will subconsciously perceive you as having those behaviors. This happens with positive qualities as well. If I tell my friend that my neighbor is always drinking and yelling at their spouse, subconsciously the y willa attach this as my reality. The subconscious works in mysterious way.
Little recap, people are here to teach us. People are complex, and gossip is harmful to us personally. These are impactful truths and when implemented into our lives can change how to react to people that frustrate us. With knowing more about the nature of people behind the scenes, how do we interact and why with others?
People will determine in the first 10 minutes of an interaction whether they want a relationship with you as well as what kind of relationship they would like. When we hear that first impressions go a long way, it is more than the unconscious body language and energy. It is also the conscious level. This is why it is important to think about how we interact with people and what we bring to our first impressions because THEY ARE IMPORTANT!
I do want to say that when we look at this on a spiritual level, I completely believe that who we need to connect with we will and at the perfect time; however, it doesn’t hurt to pay attention to how we are showing up. I am going to share a few gold standard principles with you about interactions.
The Cheat Sheet:
- People are complex, but simple behaviors can go a long way. Number one rule of interaction is to smile! Seems really simple, but sometimes we are uncomfortable and our body is more rigid with our heart racing that we forget to simply smile. A smile is an invitation to connect. It is also a way to feel happier. To others you will appear happier and genuine. With the same energy attached, people want to connect!
- People love hearing their name. It actually elicits a response in their physical body of releasing dopamine and serotonin which are some of our pleasure endorphins. Saying a person’s name aloud in a conversation even when it sometimes feels unnatural is HUGE!
- People love talking about themselves and their story. This is not because of the typical judgement we attach of people being selfish, but rather the person trying to connect. It is human nature to try to connect with another on a similar experience. It is again a basic human physiological need to want to feel connected.
- Let people lead the conversation. It does not feel good when you constantly have to guide a conversation because the other person does not take it anywhere and on the other side it is not fun when someone is steering the conversation to what they want to say, but trust that what needs to be exchanged will be.
- LISTEN TO WHAT THEY ARE SAYING! There is a huge difference between listening and “Active Listening.” When people listen in conversation, they are often preparing what they are going to say back. This is especially true in an argument or a passionate conversation. When you actively listen, you will be able to absorb what the person is saying, could repeat it back to them, and allow the person to feel heard (Ding! Ding! DIng! Remember that people want to feel heard and seen)! Take a breath after they finish and try repeating it back to them a bit and then sharing what your response is. I promise, it will make a huge shift in how you communicate with others if you are not currently practicing this!
- Finally, laugh and allow yourself to be educated! Research shows that people would rather make another laugh than laugh themselves as a reaction and the same is true for educating. People would rather educate than be educated. Realize there is a time and place for this, but engage in the conversations! Be present for the conversations.
A lot of these principles are easier said than done, but practice them! If you are thinking that your interactions are fine, I encourage you to still try them and see if you notice any shift. In turn, if you are saying, “Yes that is great, but I don’t like people or I am an Introvert so they do not apply much,” I challenge you to reframe that. Nowadays, there is a lot of talk about how extroverts and introverts function differently and while this true there is only one truth about interacting with other humans because of our basic physiological principle which is; regardless of being and introvert or extrovert, when people have more friends and meaningful connections they will always describe themselves as happier individuals. Over the past decade, the biggest trend in life satisfaction and happiness is the complaint of not having enough friends.
Make interacting with others important and meaningful! It is not only for others, but something that will increase the quality of your own life drastically as well. None of us are meant to do this life alone. We are creatures of community. We want to have a support group and a place to engage. Allow yourself the permission to do so! When you remember these truths about people and the golden standard principles of interacting, you will FEEL better in multiple aspects of your life! Interaction is pleasure my friend!
Sending love my friend!