Don't Judge a Book By It's Cover- Social Awareness and Self Awareness
Hello and thank you for taking the time to come and read this article. My name Robert and i am 25 years of age. I was born in Cambridge, United Kingdom and have lived all over the UK. This article is not only about experience but about thoughts, feelings and how we should view things around us. Especially how we affect people and how they affect us. The main focus is judgement and jumping to conclusions when we haven't read the content. When we looked only at the person on the outside but haven't got to know the person on the inside. I have been there and have been judged harshly. So i am writing this article to send out a message to the people who are judgemental, who write off someone over first impressions.
At 25 i have had my fair share , i have felt almost every emotion, and i have been through darkness. But there is light . Only if people pull back the curtains and open the window then the sunlight can shine through. I hope in writing this it will provoke thoughts in many and inspire people to make a change.
What do you think makes a person?
Open the book and discover
Rumours fly around every where these days and when they get back to you it can be hurtful. I know i have been there. When words go around and as they go from person to person they twist and turn until what was originally said is so warped. It creates an even worst picture of you until people look at you with disgust that it makes you feel low.
This is the type of situation where it is easy for people to jump to conclusions about you. Where the original thought towards you from that one person really is just an early judgement of you.They haven't spent time with you or got to know you. They haven't learnt the personality , learned how you interact with others, learnt the depths of your soul which in affect could be a reason why people judge you. Not everyone knows our inner workings.
It is important to not read between the lines, scan over the story, skip pages or even cut corners but to really listen and learn that person. They could have an amazing story, they could be a loving warm person who just wants to make friends and this where i lead to my first story.
When i was young i was very boisterous , very loud and didn't get the grip on socializing, sharing with others and had quite a short attention span. I found my self attending Wilburton Manner school in Cambridgeshire. A school specifically for children with learning difficulties and behaviour problems. I was in a class of about 9 people and in a school of about 100 pupils , 2 of which were female. For about 4 years i received learning support and guidance, nurturing almost to help me tackle the way i was and learn how to deal with traits.
By my second primary school i was know longer statemented but still carried struggles and things that affected my daily life and the way i was with others. I wasn't great with others and in fact i received a lot of bullying because i never quite fitted in. This followed me all the way through my primary school, middle school and high school. People called me weird and strange, i use to get called buck toothed because my teeth were not straight. They use to chant my name almost in an aggressive manner and a lot of time i felt down and hid my sadness from pretty much everyone. When my mother picked up on it she would worry and when tried to tackle issues they never got resolved.
For a long time i struggled to fit in where ever i went. Weather it was a new educational institution or place i always found it a struggle to make friends , keep friends and know how to react around people. A lot of the time i just kept to myself, played my play station, go for bike rides my self and looked at everyone and wished i had their happiness their friends circles.
This journey throughout my child was a challenge and i went through tears ups and downs but it was relentless. Most people never saw what went on in the background, never saw the problems i had in my life and so i was most often judged. One thing that has always stayed with me is that people thought i was a monster and never would make University. Well they were wrong.
University-A new start
When i broke through college and got my Btec in Music Technology i had the power to move on to University, which in the past people doubted me for. Why? Because they only saw what was on the outside , the way i reacted my actions but never my inner mind. University saw me find something to put my heart and soul into which was music . This was almost a therapy because i struggled with holding attention and this was something i had great focus towards.
I challenged my self to make friends which was hard but i did it. I set up a student society initially for self gain, to make friends and i achieved that. But from it i gained so much more. Social skills and leadership. It helped me in everyday life and i became stronger. Despite there always being haters i was more on track than i had been before. I had also made friends with people on my course who spent most of my time with at University. One or two of which are my best friends to this day. So again that helped me to evolve as a person and learn how to be around others.
Not everything was sparkling bright as I still had days where i would sit in my basement room listening to everyone partying up stairs, because i was so afraid i would not fit in ,not be able to cope with interactions. This still haunted me a lot , still made me afraid people would judge me straight away.
One thing i have learnt is to keep the people who care about you the most close and keep out the people who do not care and judge on one look at you. Mankind can be harsh, can be cruel but in happiness there is no space for it. So to have a level of happiness we do not need loads of friends but a few good friends. That is something i gained at University.
What is your biggest goal
I want to speak about an important subject which has affected my life in more ways than one. To me it is a great example of how judgement can be passed on so easily and that forget the lifestyles people may lead behind closed doors.
In 2011 I was diagnosed with ADD or attention deficient disorder. Quite commonly it is associated with lack of focus , behaviour and going into your own world out among other things.Many people have conditions like these but it either unaware or they simply decide not to tell anyone. Sometimes for the fear of discrimination or judgement, but that should not have to be the case. Myself and a few other people i have known, suffer with ADD and Autism and have fallen to judgement and discrimination before they have even had time to tell their story.
Early in the 90'S there wasn't a lot known about the condition but it is only until recently more research and information has surfaced.So now with this new found knowledge and answers to why I may be socially awkward and act the way I do , I am more aware of my actions.Friends and family noticed a lot of the symptoms in me and pointed it out so since then I have able to control the things I do and the way I am better around people.
In a sense I would say its contributed not entirely but to a part of my problems fitting in, the way I act and encouraged people to judge me before knowing about me. The reason i am mentioning this subject in this proportion of the article is that people come from all different backgrounds. Everyone is different in their own unique way. The important thing to remember is that we can easily pass judgement on someone but we do not know their background. They could have a mental disability or even come from a background which has involved drugs and alcohol. They might be shy and socially awkward because of their upbringing. No one knows until you explore that person.
Social media- a leader in social dysfunctionality
Social media to many is a great tool with out a doubt . It can connect us to past and present friends and creates us a form of communication which we can use when ever we like. It is wonderful in many ways however it is also can be problematic.
Today the world is on their mobile phones , their tablets etc socialising with the world but the true form of socializing face to face is loosing its place in society. Now with social media taking over it is even harder to show expression, feelings and emotion. This has become a big player in the bitching playground.
The whole likes situation for instance as well as being able to see when people have seen your message or commented on your photo can fuel skepticism. Even the Ideas and thoughts essentially we wouldn't necessarily have if we were in a social environment face to face.Some people can be seen as keen if you comment on to many photos, some people can see comments on photos or posts as negative or even in a different light to how you perceive it.
What ever is posted on a social media site can either be seen by many as good or bad. Some people will take to things differently to others , some people may find your enthusiasm or lack off too much. Either way we can not please everyone and people will pass judgements on you.It is unavoidable (unless you do not use it ). These days we have just got to be careful what we post , thinking about who will read it and the outcomes. Precaution is always a good way forward!
Thoughts and conclusion
The idea behind what i have written so far is to spark some thoughts and highlight situations where judgement may come in to place. I will be adding more to this article over time but i would love for you to get involved and share your ideas on what judgement is to you. How you may have faced it and how you have overcome it.The important message throughout is that we all must take a step back and actually get to know someone before we pass judgement. Discover there story because there story may be beautiful. It might be the reason for whom they are and the way they act!
Never Judge a book by its cover