If you were to ask my husband and I to name each other’s favorite movies, songs, books, and hobbies, we would probably get them all right. But if you were to compare the two lists, I could almost guarantee that not one of the things on either list would match up. You see, we know each other pretty well but when it comes to likes and dislikes we couldn’t be more different.
Our perceptions of the world are also quite different. My husband is a definite optimist and a rational thinker; I’m more of a worrier and a daydreamer. That colors how we see people as well. We can meet the same person; be involved in the same conversation; read the same book or watch the same movie and come away with conflicting, or at the very least moderately dissimilar judgments.
This happens not just with my husband and me. It happens with some of my other friends and colleagues as well. Generally, it’s fine. But sometimes, it can cause tension and drama. Say, for example that everyone around you admires a certain person, but your encounters with this person have always been negative. Does that mean that your experiences mean less because you are in the minority? No. It just means that you have lived a different kind of life, have different encounters, and have different experiences than others. Perhaps the opposite is true, and you have experienced kindness from someone everyone else perceives as mean.
I think these situations show that you just never know what you’re going to see in someone based on what another person thinks.
Have you ever experienced a situation in which you were wrong about someone based on what someone else told you about them? Please share.