Friday, May 29, 2020

Understanding People

Understanding People
Understanding People

Understanding is one of those few topics that can get complex and become challenging to explain in an article. But this is just an attempt to put this complex issue in a simplified manner. To understand a person, we need to first know what the understanding is based on and what are the key attributes to be kept in mind to develop an Understanding nature.

I recall a small incident from my childhood wherein, I was taking tuition's for my brother and sister. I was teaching them math’s and the topics were related to Addition, Subtraction, Multiplication etc. While I was teaching them, I was trying my best to make them learn, but they were finding it very difficult to comprehend my teaching. At that point in time I started feeling quite helpless that they were unable to understand an easy derivative and that started fueling my temper. The anger was justified from my perspective as my efforts were not yielding the desired results and my siblings were unable to understand what I was trying to explain. 

Now let’s decipher the above situation in two ways:

1. My Point Of View: From my perspective, I felt the topic was simple and was easy to understand and remember
2. My Sibling's Point Of View: They are probably hearing and understanding this for the first time. Somehow, they were unable to understand my teaching and without Understanding there can be no Learning.

Now let's talk in detail about the two aforementioned point of views:

I felt the topic was simple because someone had taught the same thing in a particular way and I was able to grasp it quickly. This led to the same concept replaying in my mind for a long period of time thus making it easier for me to remember the same. And this ease of remembrance has made it easier for me to talk and teach about the same. 

On the hindsight, My siblings came across this topic for the first time in their life and probably the way I was teaching them was not easy enough for them to understand and grasp the concepts. Hence, no matter how hard they tried, they were unable to learn it. 

Subsequently, I have to ponder and find out the reasons for their inability to understand this. Rather than pointing out as their inability, it could be possible that My understanding of this topic and explanation of the same was purely from my perspective alone. They did not have any prior knowledge or exposure of the topic, which was making it even harder for them to relate and understand. I somehow missed to focus on this key aspect. 

This small incident had a BIG Lesson for me to learn. If we want to understand a person, we should not only focus on their behavior, but also analyze the reason for their behavior by placing ourselves in their shoes. In simple words, We need to be empathetic towards the opposite person.

We all have a fondness or liking for one or the other person in our lives. It can be your parents, siblings, girlfriend, boyfriend, life partner, etc. We like them if they are with us the in the way we want them to be, but we get annoyed when the same person we like, or love goes against our thought process. This results into alienation towards that person and we start behaving rudely towards them. This rudeness can then slowly snow-ball into something more dangerous if we don't stop it in the initial stages.

However, we also need to understand the reason for our annoyance. The reason for us to get annoyed is because we have been trying to think of the situation only from our perspective and the Anger and resentment blinds us to such an extent that we tend to turn a complete blinder and forget to think this from the other person's point of view. There are times when our loved ones try to do something special for us, but we mistake all of it and it seems all wrong for us. 

I am sure most of us must have come across this situation at least once in our lifetime which would have finally made us feel guilty after we realized the actual reason for the said action. So always learn the reason for the behavior.

There are people who are always positive and there are some who are hard coded negative and can think and talk only negative things. In most of the cases a positive person is someone who observes, listens and analyzes a person's behavior before responding. They try to link the situation to their past or they try to place themselves in the other person's shoes and try to think of different ways Why he/she would have reacted in a particular manner. A positive person is more practical and tries to see the situation the way as it is. However, a negative person always finds faults in a person or situation without giving the situation slightest benefit of doubt, trying to reason and co-relate this to some incident of the past.

During my course of research, I realized that there can be 4 types of people:

1. Structured People: Structured People are very organized and structured in any kind of task they get involved in. It can range from cleaning of the house, organizing the shelf, Working on a professional project etc. They are disciplined and expect others to be the same way and try to find faults in others work. They always feel there can be no one better them or no-one can accomplish the tasks better than them.

2. Technical People: Technical People are more analytical, more into technical aspects of the work or the task. They dig more into the topic to understand it better and if the other person is not capable of explaining the details. It psyches them and they can get annoyed easily.

3. Action-Oriented People: Action-oriented People are more energetic and very social people. They can build networks very easily and they are into partying, sports, social gatherings etc. However, they are the kind of people who can get bored quickly and easily, if they don't find anything that is keeping them active and interested. 

4. Relationship People: Relationship focused people are more emotional, sensitive and they respect relationships a lot when compared to the other categories of people. These types of people are known to be Touchy and can get offended or hurt easily. 

Now, there can also be a few people who have a combination of the above categories.  In order to understand people better, we need to understand few tools.

6 Tools for Better Understanding

1. People are complex: 

There are some people who are good and some who can be bad. Not all are the same and not all think in the same manner. So, there will be differences of opinions and that is reality. So, we cannot expect everyone to understand our point of view on the very first go. 

2. Know & Understand the complete issue

We can never know anyone completely. Opinions are based on previous experiences but there is always something people can agree upon in every issue. If there is an argument over small details, try to find a common point to agree on and this will reduce the argument and can even sort out things quickly. 

3. Try and know why people think and act the way they do:

Do not focus on what people think or do but try to analyze why they think whatever they think or why they do whatever they do. Try to learn what happened in the past that might have made them form this thought in their mind. 

4. Ways of listening called looping

Choose what you think the most important issue to the person was and tell it back to them. Do this very clearly and the other person will acknowledge and correct if you got it wrong. This will make the person feel you are ready to listen to their point of view and they will open up more. This in turn makes it easy for you because they will be ready to listen to your viewpoint as well.

5. Spend time with people who Agree to Disagree

This is not always easy but it's important. When we start spending more time, we will learn that the people are more than their opinions on a said issue. People want to have respectful discussions across differences and if there are rules, they will act according to it.

6. Work against what we already believe

Don't always try to find proof for what we believe, instead we should question ourselves more to understand if there is something that can prove us wrong. This will help us to be open to learning a bigger aspect of the same point. 

I believe now we know why people are so different and why they think and behave the way they do. Hope this helps you in your day to day life and improve your social bonding.

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Let's learn to be more understanding as this will help us in the long run. 

Writer: Sonu Singh Yadav
Editor: Soumyashree Bangera
Idea: Personal Experiences and YouTube
Picture Credit:


Reena said...

Nice Article...😊👍

Sourabh Ail said...

Nice article 👌