We often see this happening in life: we have a pattern of thinking, others have a different pattern of thinking. What happens when the two collide? How do we solve the difference?
Basically, the most common thoughts when seeing two different patterns of thinking colliding are this: thinking that we (or the others) are great, thinking that we (or, again, the others) are bad, of being neutral on the whole thing.
As you see, there are three feelings we can have both about others, and about ourselves. Let’s analyze all six possibilities.
A. How do we feel about ourselves?
a. If we think that we are right, this is great for the psychology; Great ego, great pride, great feelings, yahoo! We’re over the world; One problem though: you may see you so good compared to others, that you may feel like crushing them; It’s also poor on developing oneself (why would you need to improve on perfection?); But it is a very optimistic way of seeing things, and it’s good for the spirit;
b. If we are indifferent to ourselves, we can’t improve; But we do have this option: not to care; What’s the advantage of this? We do have a pretty good ego, a stable way of seeing things, rather calm; All-in-all, not that bad;
c. Let’s say we have bad feelings about ourselves; This might lead to some problems like depression, or bad feelings on ourselves; It might also lead into progress, so all is not lost; I like this view a lot on the development issue, although it’s not that great on morale;
B. How do we feel about the others?
a. If we think that others are great, we have two options; First is to try and copy them, in order to improve ourselves to be as good as them; This is not just admiring them, it is also copying their behavior; You want to be like them; The other option you have is to just feel great about the others, and try to spend time with them in order to feel good as long as possible; But most of the time one feels the urge to improve by looking at his models;
b. We can be neutral about others; This will lead to no progress, but this will also lead to no bad thoughts, like envy; This is quite comforting zone;
c. We may think that the others are wrong; One would express that the others are wrong usually by gossiping, talking from behind (not saying things to one’s face); The alternative, being plain rude and telling people that they are wrong, is not much better either; Why is thinking about others as doing bad things faulty? I think there are plenty of reasons even from highly skilled persons in this world to acknowledge that there are persons better than themselves; So, most of all it’s illogically to think that there are only bad people in this world; Anyhow, seeing the bad things in other gives you bad mental processes and doesn’t really help you improve (what can you learn from others like that?);
How do these combine?
a. If you see others doing bad things and you doing good things, there’s no way you can improve, but you might have a very good personal feeling;
b. If you see no need for improvement in either you or others, and you also have no feelings on the good things in others, you will be calm, no problems, but you will still not improve;
c. Finally, if you see the bad things within you and the good things within others, you have room for improvement; Although this might be stressful, this is the method I like most.
Yes, there are more mixes than that. You can feel good about yourself on some things, and bad on others. You can be indifferent to others or care too much about someone else. You can think badly on two persons and great on other four. Life is more complex than that, I acknowledge that.
Most of the improvements in life come from seeing others doing great, or that we don’t do well. Usually this is solved by trying to imitate the world or trying to change ourselves.
If you see bad things in others and good things in yourself, your mood might be great, but your need for improvement will be lacking some resource.
But, all in all, we do have an option on how to live our lives, and even if we are not always right, even if others aren’t always right, we do need to acknowledge that:
a. a progress can be a great way to improve (see the good in others, the bad in you);
b. a happy feeling can exist if you see others doing bad things and you doing good things (but this will have no improvement);
c. you may also wish to be indifferent.
I hope I’ve cleared some ideas in you.