Take a moment to look around and see the people around you. They might be classmates, fellow drivers on the road, people in a store, etc. No matter who they are, each one of them has a past. Each one of them has a story that you know absolutely nothing about. It’s not plausible to take a look at a girl or guy with dark clothes and piercings and think, “oh, they’re so emo” or “oh they must be depressed”. It’s not right to watch a girl walk by in a really short skirt and tight shirt and think, “oh, she’s a slut”. You don’t know these people; the only thing you know is what you see. We all know the old saying, “don’t judge a book by it’s cover”, yet most of us do it anyway. It’s natural human instinct to make assumptions about people just from their appearance. Does that make it okay? No.
People watching can be pretty exciting because everyone out there is so different from one another, that people just fascinate us. Sometimes we wonder what strangers think of us when we walk by them. Do they think we are happy? Do they think we are a kind person? Or maybe they think something negative about us because they see something physically about us that makes them speculate. Even if you never hear or see one ounce of judgement coming from a stranger to you, it still makes you wonder what people think about you. I believe that almost everyone has at least thought about this once in their life.
The problem can only be solved if you make the initiative to do something about it. Look for the good in people, even if you don’t know them. I try to do this, especially if I come across someone very different from myself. I try to think of something positive about that person, whether it be physically, or mentally, especially if I see them interact with someone. Over the summer, there was an elderly lady living in my apartment complex, and some would say she was a little “creepy”, mainly because she was missing teeth and talked about her cats a lot. Now, if that’s all I told you about her, you would probably wouldn’t think very highly of her, would you? Well I didn’t want to be that person who made a face or ran away every time I saw her. I wanted to focus on what kind of person she was. I didn’t really get to know her well at all, but what I did come to find is that she said hi to me every single time I saw her, along with asking me how I’m doing. I found it completely endearing that she would take time to talk to me, someone she doesn’t know, just to ask how my day is going. The conversations were always short-lived, but from those conversations, I didn’t see a creepy smile of missing teeth; I saw the friendly face of a kind stranger with a genuine heart. It always upset me when I saw the way people looked at her, even just thinking about it now.
It’s virtually impossible to get to know every single stranger that you see in your life, but it’s very possible to see the best light in them when you find yourself seeing the worst. You just have to remember that no matter how different someone looks, they are still human. We are all a part of the human species walking and living on Earth, breathing the same air, going to the same places, and doing the same things. What makes us unique is the way we choose to live life and the way we view life. Each person out there has at least one unique quality that makes them different from the person standing next to them. We just have to cherish that quality rather than see it for something negative.
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