Another way to say this is that we understand when we seek to understand. Until then, we tend to be so stuck in our personal worlds that we don’t really even register what is happening outside of them.
Over time, my thinking has shifted to trying to understand, and it has made a tremendous difference in all areas of my life.
For instance, I have found renewed patience with difficult students. How hard is it for the child with special needs to try to live up to school expectations? What about the “normal” ones — is there something going on at home or some mindset that they have picked up that is causing them to act out? Has it been an especially hard day?
In the same way, I try to understand my husband when I disappointed in some way. I’m even working on understanding the people who have hurt me the deepest, so that I can forgive and let go.
How can seeking to understand others help you?