I Really Need To Understand Someone

I really need to understand someone.

Dear Shee,

It's a great thing that you want to understand someone. In this day and age, when it seems to be "all about me," it is good to hear someone who wants to look outside him or herself and think about the other person, by striving to understand him or her.

Now comes the hard part, actually understanding!

To truly understand the person, you would really need to be that person. The closes that we can come to it is "walking a mile in his or her moccasins" (American Indian Proverb). That is not always easy to do, since you would have to live their life, and think they way they think.

Many times our viewpoints are not only different from someone else's viewpoints, but our basis for the viewpoints may be different. For example, your definition of abnormal and normal are more than likely different from some of your peers. Oh, you are going to define normal and abnormal, to some degree, based on what you have experienced in your culture, at the time that you have grown up in that culture, but there may be differences in your home life and family definition of normal and abnormal. The hardest thing, is to realize that what you may define as abnormal may not be normal at all, or vice versa. And, your normal may be normal, but the one you love may view something as normal that is abnormal.

Confused yet? Don't worry. The key is to, first, understand that your perceptions are not necessarily the perceptions of others, but more than that, in understanding someone, there is a simpler approach than going dizzy over trying to define normal, abnormal, love, like, etc. You know what that is? Communication! Talk to this person, share who you are and encourage this person to share who he or she is. There is really no other replacement for good, solid communication. The rest? Well, a lot of that comes with experience, and hopefully some wisdom gained along the way.

Deborah E
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Deborah is a #1 Jazz Singer, as well as a lifelong musician, songwriter, and sound engineer. She is also a writer who pursues a love of positive psychology. She is a thesis short of having her doctorate in psychology.
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