“Is anyone “good” going to be at the party?” This, unfortunately, is a common question asked many times before social events. It is a query that should be abolished for all time. The underlying profound reason is that it truly doesn’t matter who will be there. This is because each and every person in attendance has merit in some fashion and good traits that make that person worth knowing and enjoying.
Humans should refrain from premature, superficial judgments of others. Everyone deserves a chance at this party called “life.” The point is that we are all flawed in some way or another; therefore, we aren’t qualified to be the judge of others. By keeping an open and accepting mind, we are granting ourselves the capacity to see that each person attending the party, the meeting, the dinner, the school lunch table, etc. has value and worthiness in varying areas. The more unappealing traits often can be overlooked by closely paying attention to the good ones.
In Joyce Heatherly’s book, Balcony People, she describes a personal shopping trip for jeans. Pair after pair was uncomfortable and tight. Finally she finds a pair that was “just right.” She looked at the tag and understood why. It said that they were 95% cotton and 5% spandex. She said, “Suddenly, I knew why we have such a problem with making allowances for others. We don’t have 5% spandex in our attitudes.”
The underlying message of allowing spandexibility of the mind is essentially rooted in the value of not wasting your time on fault-finding expeditions of people. You’re essentially short-changing yourself when you could use the time and energy cultivating a wealth of friendships. Focusing on what is right about someone rather than what is wrong is a far more credible avenue.
For example, someone may appear to have the annoying trait of boastfulness. However, if the person is given a chance, we may discover that he/she may also have a loyal, kind heart and could be your greatest support throughout a difficult period of life—not to mention other positive traits to enjoy. Or maybe we’re turned off by someone because they talk too much. Perhaps, if we listened instead of turning him/her off, we may learn something fascinating about life. We never know the possible great wit that lies beneath someone who projects a reserved attitude that might be wrongfully construed as conceit. Perhaps, the problem is shyness and insecurity. The bottom line is that they just need a friend…could that be you?
It is important to also have an understanding that sometimes we are not always privy to what’s going on in someone’s personal life. The person could be dealing with private concerns and worries that have an effect on their behavior in public that may not be appealing. Give the person the benefit of the doubt and realize that something must be going on that can’t be shared. If you sense this, it is up to you to be their friend with patience, space and non-judgmental understanding.
In summation, if we all cater to this type of amenable, receptive, forgiving attitude with tons of “spandexibility,” we will benefit by enjoying a multitude of all types of friendships–enough to span a lifetime. The great return in adapting an accommodating nature with non-critical viewings of people is how “you” will feel about yourself at the end of the day. You can fall asleep with a conscience that is smiling rather than one that is an unattractive judgmental mode.
So, in anticipation of your next social gathering, perhaps, the more appropriate comment rooted in “spandexibility” would be, “I can’t wait to enjoy seeing “everyone!”
Hunter Darden–order personalized copies of my books by scrolling to the top of this page and clicking on the link or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.