So much of my younger years were spent trying to figure people out. I wondered what I had said or done for people to act a certain way. The next half of my life was realizing what I do has little to do with how most people behave.
I'm not saying we can treat people poorly and expect them to be happy to be around us. That is not going to happen. But have you ever had a friend, or family member be in your life constantly, then drop out or back, for no apparent reason. Or worse still, stay in your life but act in a way that causes havoc? What I have noticed, and was so nicely pointed out by the following quote is, it usually has nothing to do with anything other than what's going on in that person's life.
Some people are not loyal to you, they are loyal to their need of you. Once their need changes, so does their loyalty.
Many of us are surprised, sometimes even insulted or at least taken aback, when someone we know behaves in a way that is less than becoming. It only takes a visit to a store or restaurant to see that people's behaviours are more random than our involvement. I've seen people speak to a young waitress or cashier, in a way that is so ridiculous that you have to shake your head.
The best example of this is played out literally every day in any sport's field. I spent ten years as a coach for a fast pitch league, so I have seen my share of bad behaviour. Parents, grandparents and the occasional player showed their worst side quite publicly. If you have ever seen a red faced, fifty year old man yelling at a sixteen year old female umpire you gotta know there's a problem there that's not going to be solved on the ball field.
So I ask you, this week, if you encounter negative behaviour, do something different. Observe it as an outsider with curiosity, instead of engaging. Ask yourself, is this really about me? See how that alone changes your perspective on the situation and the person.
I'll add a link for those who have truly toxic people in their lives but let's face it, they are few and far between. Most people are just in a bad mood; let it pass, not pass through you.
7 smart ways to deal with toxic people