It Ain’t All Rainbows and Unicorns

by Matt Monge

You have to at least consider the possibility that you have no idea what’s going on.

We’d like to think that we do. We all like to feel like we know people, like we get people, and that we’re one of the chosen few who can do what is famously called reading people.

Don’t get me wrong. I’m not discounting that there are people who are especially gifted in those areas. There most certainly are. No question.


At the same time, you’ve got to admit that the vast majority of the time you don’t have a clue what’s going on inside a person’s head, heart, or life.

In some ways, that’s part of what makes the human experience amazing — as you get to know someone, you slowly discover some of those things, and they compel you to either appreciate that person more or less. Other times you “click” with someone and that whole process is accelerated. Other times still — and these instances are very, very, very rare — you connect with someone almost instantly in a way you can’t even understand.

That said, I think we too often operate under the assumption that everything’s peachy with people when we really have no idea. So when people don’t act like we want them to or think they should, we may attribute it to incorrect causes.

As we meander around our workplaces, we see people scattered throughout the building, and barely take a second to think about what’s really going on with that person. You wave and smile and say hi, and they return the pleasantry with a salutation and facial expression of their own, and you both move on; but neither of you have any idea what’s beneath that wave, smile, and greeting.

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