A few months ago I wrote about communication and how important it is. Understanding goes hand in hand with communication and can make things very difficult when neither party is trying to understand the other.

Everything in life is based on perspective. How a person sees and thinks about the world and the circumstances they find themselves in whether it be positive or negative. You can never know nor can you truly ever comprehend what a person is going through. But, that doesn’t mean that we shouldn’t try.

Communicating your thoughts and feelings can be difficult. Even more so when the person you’re speaking with refuses to open their eyes to try and see where you might be coming from. The biggest problem with understanding is that people assume. Assuming they know how you feel and how you think. Sometimes it’s based on similar situations and feelings they have felt, sometimes it’s utter bullshit. It doesn’t matter what you’ve been through or how you felt about it. When it comes to another person, you know nothing. Things that worked for you may not for them. It’s okay to use your situation as an example to advise but don’t ever judge someone for how they choose to handle things in their life.

A very wise woman once told me that all we are is the sum of our actions. My interpretation is that you are made of your experiences. You can only do, say, and act based on the experiences you’ve had in your own life. Just because someone may find themselves in a similar situation that you’ve been in, it doesn’t mean that they’ve experienced the same things you have. How you live your life is different from literally everyone else. It doesn’t meant that your way is the right way and/or the only way.

The best thing you could ever do for someone confiding in you about anything, is to listen. There’s no way you could ever truly understand somebody but you should never stop trying to. That’s how you’re going to building long-lasting, meaningful relationships in life. Even knowing that you can’t truly understand, you care enough to try. People will see that, if they don’t, ask yourself if they’ve ever tried to understand you and your circumstances when you confide in them.

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