How We See Others

We tend to see others how we see them, from our own imagination, not how they really are.

We tend to fixate on certain markers that are familiar to us from our own lives and past, and then create an image around the person based on those markers.

We tend to quite literally miss huge amounts of information about the real person, even if they are our own child, our own parent, our own family member, or our close friend.

For example, we may know a person who is actually a very orderly person and very much likes order, but when we met them, they were overwhelmed by something in their lives, and appeared "scattered". So we fixate on that "scattered" marker, and build an image of them around that. THEN, as time goes by, we don't see that they aren't really a "scattered" person, that we just LIKED that marker because it made us feel more organized in comparison, and maybe it seemed endearing. Or maybe we like feeling like we're better than someone else. Either way, we keep seeing them as a "scattered person", and therefore keep treating them as if that's what they are, like it's carved into their skull, because WE like it, not because it's who they are.

The more we treat them that way, the more likely they're going to get sick of the way we treat them and become distant and unavailable. If they're our child, partner, or other very close person, we can actually cause them emotional/mental pain and damage from treating them as if they're something they're not, which will impact the bigger picture of their life. 

We can also fixate on a marker that we see as very positive, and we often do. We build an image of that person around that positive marker, and then we don't see them for who or what they really are. The image we build becomes like a painted picture that lays over them like a blanket.

Nearly all human beings do this, especially before we are aware of the process. It's just the brain's way of making shortcuts and "easy buttons" for the things and people in our world. Becoming aware of this process means we can appreciate others for who they really are.