Actually People Aren’t That Sensitive

I snore.

Not only do I snore, I am about 90% certain (based on consistent testimony from family) that I snore like a sick, fat lumberjack. This is not an issue for me per se; from where I stand in my little imperfect bubble, I guess I could do worse things: chew with my mouth open, maybe? Eat small children for breakfast? Mass murder people in movie theaters?

Anyways, the snoring just is what it is, something that will always be with me until I have one of those useless sinus surgeries (will NEVER happen) and I lose weight (which is a real toss up at this point in my life).

So after 36 solid years of being reminded that I snore, I find the continued commentary neither funny nor helpful. The punchline never changes–I mean how many times can you laugh at the same lame joke; the advice never taken (see previous paragraph for I’m NOT getting ready to do right now). Not a big deal–except when I do not laugh “with” or nod in condemned agreement, then I am being sensitive. You can’t ever say anything to me anymore. Which–for the record–is not true and brings me to my point: someone being tired of you constantly pointing out a shortcoming that they have does not make them sensitive. It makes you insensitive for always bringing it up.

We all have something that sucks about us. I know I have many, many weird tics and bad habits that get on folks’ nerves. Let’s see: I snore (but you knew that already), pick at my nose (and sometimes my toenails when I am watching tv), chew my cuticles, fart in my sleep. I lack a filter in the worse situations, I steal books from the library (by mistake of course), and I curse profusely when I am excited or angry (to name a random few). I guess I have some others that I am totally not aware of (that my friends and family members and coworkers can name off without thinking twice). But hey! In all fairness they have some issues too (that I will not name here so that no one gets their feelings hurt).

BUT we also have awesome things about ourselves. What would life be like if someone mentioned my good qualities and quirks just as often as they mentioned the bad? I will tell you what would happen: people would not walk around so defensive and sour all the time. Kids would come to school excited to learn. Teachers would give their administration 110%. Waitstaff would bring your drinks faster. Cab drivers would take the short route. Mail carriers would not lose your mail. God would smile.

We have made picking at people an art form, yet wonder why people are so rude and mean and unhappy and defensive.

It is so easy to list another person’s imperfections, but what do you really gain from the experience other than a brief uplift out of your own personal insecurity? Totally not worth it. And yeahhhhh, we can talk about folks being extra sensitive (my hand is raised here), but guess what? Most people do not start out sensitive or insecure. We make them that way by always talking about what is wrong with them. Or really what WE THINK is wrong.

I am as guilty as the next person. It is just way too easy to poke at people in their weak spots. I grew up with people pointing out every little bad thing in an effort to help me be better (and sometimes just to make me feel bad). So I inherently see the wrong and want to correct it. I used to think I was doing good–you know, being that honest friend (and whatever other excuse people use to be low-key petty),but the older I get the more I see how I am just adding to the struggles that folks already have. Most of the time I am not helping at all–I am just making their lives worse. Most people know what little issues they have and just need to be loved despite it and through it.

Listen. You do not have to be Mother Teresa or Nelson Mandela to change the world around you. All you need to do is be compassionate enough to not kick the dead horse of shortcomings in other people’s lives. Instead try feeding the live horses of good qualities by mentioning those sometimes too. All you have to do is own your insensitivity and deal according to who you’re with. Everybody don’t wanna play the dozens with you. Stop pissing in other people’s corn pops. Be helpful! Bring some milk. Or a spoon.

Irradicate the sensitivity that you see in people by not being insensitive.

(This message has been brought to you by the most sensitive/insensitive person in the world-pick away at your own risk!)

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