It's hard to remember that there is more to this world
than what we see. When people are acting disrespectfully
or ignoring us, we look at the external action. (We tend
to forget that inside a person's head, there's a whole
other world, and we aren't privy to it. We don't know
someone's motives or feelings.)
Likewise, we're all limited in our interpretational skills.
We see the world how we have come to think of it--
how we expect it--not how it truly is. We all project
and expect and deny....we tend to see others through
a filter of our needs (whether they are being met, or not.)
Instead of assuming that someone is as rigid, mean, or
dismissive as we imagine them to be, what would happen
if we stepped outside ourselves for a moment and opened
ourselves to more possibilities? Allowed that maybe they
are deeply pained and afraid, and handling things the best
they know how?
Think for a moment about how much of our lives and
thoughts are unknown. Think of how much most of us expect of
others in terms of wanting our needs understood (even
without being communicated.) Remember how we have been
shaped by every incident that has gone before....all the pain
we carry. Now realize that every person on the planet has this
same history, this same internal world...because they do.
This is not about comprehending the specifics of another
person. This is about being in a place of understanding and
self-respect; that we can appreciate ourselves without need
of another doing so, and we can compassionately allow another
to be wherever they are in life.