Scott H Young

The Critical 7 Rules To Understand People


My headline might sound overreaching. Clearly a rule can’t define something as complex as human behavior. But despite this, I’ve found most people tend to make the same mistakes. These mistakes are frequent enough that they create conflicts later. Remembering these seven rules will help you avoid these mistakes.

People Skills is About Being Nice, Friendly and Interesting, Duh!

Most the books I’ve read on dealing with people either make two claims:

  • Incredibly obvious stuff that most sensible people understand; even if they haven’t always mastered it. Things like be nice, be considerate, etc.
  • Bizarre and complex theories that may explain some behavior, but is difficult to generalize.

Between these two I’ve found there seems to be a gap of information that is can be applied generally, but isn’t always obvious. These frequent mistakes tend to cause most people conflicts, social errors and emotional upsets.

The Seven

Here are the seven rules I’m talking about:

Rule One: Never blame malice for what can easily be explained by conceit.

People don’t care about you. This isn’t because people are mean or hurtful, but simply because they are mostly focused on themselves. Consider this hypothetical pie-chart showing the variety of thoughts a typical person has:

Thought Chart

In this example, 60% of thoughts are self-directed. My goals. My problems. My feelings. Another 30% are directed towards relationships, but how they affect me. What does Julie think of me? How will boss evaluate my performance in the next review? Do my friends like me or see me as irritating?

Only 10% in this model is time spent in empathy. Empathy is the rare event where one person actually feels the emotions, problems and perspective of another person. Instead of asking what Julie thinks of me, I ask what is Julie thinking.

Within that 10%, most people then divide attention between hundreds of other people they know. As a result, you would occupy a fraction of a percentage in most peoples minds, and only a couple percentage points in a deeply bonded relationship. Even if you are in another persons thoughts, it is how your relationship affects them, not you.

What does this mean?

  • Embarrassment doesn’t make a lot of sense. Since others are only focusing a small portion of there thoughts onto judging you, your self-judgement is overwhelmingly larger.
  • People who appear to be mean or hurtful don’t usually do it intentionally. There are exceptions to this, but generally the hurt you feel is a side-effect, not the principle cause.
  • Relationships are your job to maintain. Don’t wait to be invited to parties or for people to approach you.

Rule Two: Few Social Behaviors are Explicit

Basically this rule means that most the intentions behind our actions are hidden. If a person is feeling depressed or angry, usually the resulting behaviors distort their true feelings. If I feel you snubbed me, I might hold my tongue but ignore you later.

The old joke is that women use words like, “fine,” and, “go ahead,” when they really feel the opposite. But I’ve noticed men do this too in polite situations, although often not in the same way.

The application of this rule is that you need to focus on empathy, not just hearing a person. Demonstrate trust, build rapport and learn to probe a bit. By focusing on empathy you can usually break away these subversions and get to the heart of the issue faster.

The other application of this rule is that most the time you feel something, nobody else knows about it. So don’t get angry when people aren’t responding to you. If you deceive your thoughts with your actions, don’t get angry when you fool people.

Rule Three: Behavior is Largely Dictated by Selfish Altruism

To say everyone is completely selfish is a gross exaggeration. That ignores all the acts of kindness, sacrifice and love that make the world work. But I would argue that most (not all, but most) behavior does work from the principles of selfish altruism.

Selfish altruism is basically win/win. It is where helping you directly or indirectly helps me. There are a couple main categories where this applies:

  1. Transactions - If I purchase a car, both myself and the dealer benefit. I get a vehicle, which I want. The dealer gets money to improve his lifestyle. This is the predominant form of selfish altruism between people who don’t have emotional bonds.
  2. Familial - Blood is thicker than water. We are designed to protect people who share our genes. This can sometimes shift towards extremely close friends and loved ones.
  3. Status - Helping someone is a sign of power. Many species of primates will offer assistance as a sign of dominance. People act similarly, offering aid to boost their self-esteem and reputation.
  4. Implied Reciprocity – Many relationships are based on the idea that if I help you, one day you will help me as well.

Occasionally behavior falls outside this group. Nameless heroes dying for causes that don’t help their bloodline. Volunteers devoting their time towards humanitarian missions. But these are the minority, whereas most actions can be explained by some form of selfish altruism.

How do you apply this rule? You understand the motives of people and appeal to them as if they were selfish. Find ways to help people within these four categories. Don’t expect people to offer aid outside of selfish altruism, it isn’t impossible, but it isn’t likely.

Rule Four: People Have Poor Memories

Ever been told someone’s name at a party and then forgot it later? Another rule of human behavior is that people have trouble remembering things. Especially information (as you’ll recall in rule one) that doesn’t apply to themselves. People are more likely to remember your similarities than your differences (unless they were emotionally incensed by them).

Recently I even broke this rule. I made arrangements to talk to a person I hadn’t met before on the phone. Even with my normally foolproof system of calendars and to-do lists, a few spontaneous schedule changes caused me to miss the call. I quickly apologized and made a new arrangement.

But the fact is most people don’t have organized GTD systems. People are forgetful by nature, so once again, don’t assume malice or disinterest if something is forgotten. The other side of this rule is that you can demonstrate reliability by having a good memory or system (if it doesn’t fail you).

Rule Five: Everyone is Emotional

Perhaps this is an exaggeration. But the core of the message is that people tend to have stronger feelings about something than they let on. People who regularly have outbursts of anger, depression or flamboyant enthusiasm are generally frowned upon in most cultures. This especially applies to men (for women trying to figure us out).

The application of this rule is to not assume everything is fine just because someone isn’t having a nervous breakdown. We all have our individual problems, angst and upsets that are normally contained. You don’t need to call people out on their private deception, but being sensitive to those underlying currents gives you an advantage in trying to help.

The alternate application of this rule is similar to rule two. People generally assume everything is fine unless you just had a blowup.

Rule Six: People are Lonely

This is another broad generalization. But it is amazing how many people who seem to have it all, suffer from bouts of loneliness. As social animals, I believe people are especially sensitive to any threats to becoming ostracized. In Neanderthal times, exile meant death, so loneliness and the desire to be with other people is a strong one.

The application of this rule is that loneliness is fairly common, so in that sense, you really aren’t alone. I used to be bothered when I felt alone or an outsider in a social group. Although I’m still human, I’ve found recognizing this feeling to be fairly common as a way to minimize it.

Rule Seven: Did I Mention People Are Self-Absorbed?

This may sound like a reiteration of rule one, but I believe the applications extend beyond relationships and your emotional state. The fact that people tend to be too concerned about themselves to give you much attention, that people tend to be lonelier, more emotional and feel differently than they let on applies to how you view the world.

If anything this perspective should make you more proactive and independent. Once I started really learning these rules, it made far more sense that I needed to take charge. By placing your individual happiness in the hands of another person (or people), you ignore all these rules and do so at your own peril.

I like to take an optimistic, but realistic view of people. People who are generally try their best, but make mistakes and suffer from unintended self-absorption. In other words, they are basically like you.


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226 Responses to “The Critical 7 Rules To Understand People”

  1. [...] up far more than perfect abilities ever would have. Afterwards, I was persuaded to sing karaoke :P People don’t care; that has been a great realisation for [...]

  2. Maria says:

    I’ve just stumbled onto this website, by Googling ‘how to find a philosophy in life’, and I think it is excellent! I am 47 and really feel ‘lost’ – as if I don’t understand myself, others around me or where I’m going in life. I got married at 25 because it seemed the right thing to do, eventually had a daughter who is now 12, have drifted in and out of jobs, never staying longer than 4 years, and now rapidly approaching my 50th year I don’t know where I came from or where I am going.

    This idea of ‘selfish altruism’ has struck a chord with me. As I have got older I feel that I am lonely ‘inside myself’, wanting people to love, need and appreciate me and feeling that I have no true friends…desperate for someone to really understand me. Realising that they too have problems, and may be thinking just about themselves, sort of explains why I feel marginalised.
    The idea of ‘taking control’ and being myself in the midst of all this is scary for me, but I can see how it would help.
    I have been on medication for depression for 12 years, for no reason that I can put a finger on…I need to find my own confidence.

    One commentator talks about ,,,,’being the needy child in every relationship. Some people are frozen forever in emotional adolescence and turn every one else into their parents; if we haven’t forgiven our parents, we’ve never really left home!’…GOSH, THIS RINGS TRUE TO ME…. Things about my home life haunt me, and I emotionally need to let them go…

    Thanks Scott…I feel your ideas have opened something up to me!

  3. Ashley says:

    I really like this, even reading this now, i automatically just tried to apply all of the factors to myself and tried to see how they fitted into my life. I dont think there is anything wrong with being self centred to an extent, as long as you are aware of it, manage it and try to look at things from another persons point of view sometimes, you should be just fine. I think in trying how to understand people, we really just have to understand ourselves, we are all human, we come from the same blueprint so once you take an introspective look at your life, behaviours and feelings you can relate to others better. At the end of the day everyone is seeking love, survival, warmth etc and once you get down to those core fundamentals you can relate to anyone.

  4. Fyodor says:

    “Relationships are your job to maintain. Don’t wait to be invited to parties or for people to approach you.”

    Inviting oneself to parties doesn’t really work, does it? This is the real dilemma here: a person who is lonely is either “not trying hard enough” but if they are and it gets them nowhere it’s because they’re “too clingy”. Showing value is kind of hard if you don’t have a social circle…

    Finding friends without being introduced to them through your social circle is hard, that’s just a fact of life.

  5. [...] The job of the freelancer is to be a honest person and do the job good even though he is thousands of kilometers away from his employer. I constantly see employers complaining that they’ve gotten bad quality translations of texts from employees freelancers. And how could they know that the translation is bad. If you have a game website and you need to translate it for the Japanese market, all of the words look the same you can’t tell if it’s good or not. And you can’t trust someone to proofread it. He might charge you for writing a whole new article if it’s of bad quality. Ok, I went in somewhere I shouldn’t but life is like that. Many people prefer lying to their employers and telling them that they have qualifications that they don’t and get the money for a job they don’t even understand. [...]

  6. This is a few great things, but I personally still think the exact things we need to understand people is too complex to know. The uniqueness and differences in so many of these humans is something extremely difficult to understand right now unless we can tilt our perspective as a whole to others and know exactly what they are thinking. Even with this, human behavior is still very complicated to understand.

  7. Ida says:

    Wow, this has made the crushing loneliness and alienation I’ve experienced in the last 6 months feel like an exaggeration. It’s funny how we seem to ignore the fact that we are never the only ones hurting inside. Amazing article!

  8. Matthias says:

    There are a lot of claims I do agree with, cause my own experiences with people have led me to similar conclusions.

    I do especially agree with “Everyone is Emotional” — Taking in account that our behaviour is always constrained by emotions rather than just reasoning was good for reflecting about my own behaviour as well as for understanding and responding to those of others.

    “People Have Poor Memories” — that is true and also applies to me. But I find myself having a very selective memory and also spending attention very selective. I do rarely forget arrangements which I am very excited about and do remember conversations with much details for a long time, if I was interested, but if my interest is just average or low I forget very fast or even don’t take notice.

    “People Are Self-Absorbed” — Yes and I do think that it is a very severe issue in society, it causes loneliness and a very limited perception of reality because if you’re centred on your self and only relate things to yourself you are definitely alone within the centre of your own world. I’m considered about myself, cause I know I am the best one for this job and I can’t care about others if I wouldn’t care about myself. But I like to tell “Well, I am not that important and I don’t need to be important”, I just like to be happy and like to see other people being happy too. That don’t needs very much but fundamental things. Such a pity that advertisements for example draw on our selfishness to make us want things we actually don’t need and to consume much, and cheap, and without responsibility. There are reasons why we have this problems…

    Hence I don’t like the model of “Selfish Altruism” very much. It’s very popular these days and it can explain human behaviour in many cases. Yet it’s still a model which is a simplification of reality to certain aspects which people think they are important. Though I won’t suggest an alternative I do think that reality is different and that philosophy have different explanations too. Like the author has said, there are exceptions and hence there are doubts.

  9. Jay says:

    … after going through this blog, it seems things are getting clearer and I’m realizing the deeper aspects of why I was feeling so lonely for such a long time, the fact of the matter is “no one gives a d!@n”, it is just you, you and you…

    thanks Scott for making us realize this and ignoring the supposedly ‘ludicrous’ remarks that people ‘pass’ behind your back which you tend to take seriously and try to modify your behavior just to make them talk nice to you and about you…..

    the comments were also more encouraging and worth of wiseness that reflects from the blog writing; I don’t know about anyone else, but I’m making a note of these and imbibe in my thinking about others’ thinking, so loneliness should be passé’ !!

  10. annnie` says:

    Amazing article! Very insightful.

  11. Y says:

    People Have Poor Memories:
    I completely disagree. It’s not acceptable to forget a commitment to someone. If you’re a forgetful person, then don’t make a commitment. Lack of follow through = lack of respect, and “being forgetful” is a shitty excuse.

  12. [...] (This is excerpted from Scott Young’s “Critical 7 Rules To Understand People”) [...]

  13. Kim says:

    I’ve been wondering for a while why people don’t seem to “care” about many important aspects of life. Your first point just answers it so well: Most people are only focused on themselves and their (mostly) immediate problems.

    Thank you for the great read!

  14. Oddvar says:

    Remarkable article!
    Stumbled upon this after a search on an english word “nuke”.
    I found a translation of the article about bad habits to my native language. It was terrible, because of machine translation.

    Your site seems to separate from mainstream blogs with rare insight. Thank you for writing this article! :-) I will return and read more, I might even buy a book :-)

  15. ThomasPc TheBitGrinder says:

    Those rules are great tools to better understand people, including one self. Just remember there is such a thing as over analyzing, witch is the process of understanding.
    Some things in life is not meant to be understood, their meant to be experienced ;)

  16. agxpr says:

    completely agree, very well said. day in day out we have to work with ourselves and with people and obviously everyone else thinks the same! So, if the above common ground is understood, nothing like it. unless our circumstances force us to change or we think we’ve achieved whatever we wanted (very few of are us so lucky) its tough to be altruistic.

    agxpr.wordpress.com

  17. I have found everyone has stories or beliefs of how things are suppose to be. When a disagreement happens it is because each has their own story of how things are. One person wants the other to believe their view and their opposition wants the other to see that their story is the right one and should see it their way. Conflicts because of this happens even between countries at war. It is a no win situation. Everyone has their preconceived ideas they hold on to without seeing the others point of view.

  18. Scott,

    What a great breakdown of the human condition! I never really looked at it so in-depth, but after pondering your list I can’t argue with any of it, especially when I consider the actions and motivations of myself. This post was certainly enlightening when it comes to me and you have given me the courage to make my own motivations more conscious from day to day. Thanks for the post!

  19. [...] person’s point of view, mid-conversation?” You’ll definitely learn a lot more by trying to understand the other person and you’ll keep yourself out of [...]

  20. Sagar says:

    Wow….
    It’s like reading a whole human pshcology in just seven small paragraph..
    I am barney and 20 years old..
    Most people think that i am too young to understand about relationship and life…..
    But seriously….
    I am trying …
    And this is really very very helpful…….

  21. [...] Scott H Young- The Critical 7 Rules to Understand People-Found this in Scott’s archives, definitely worth reading for people interested in improving their social skills. [...]

  22. Andrew says:

    Dude, I read this and knew every word of it (I’m not criticizing, just agreeing), but I’ve never found anybody else who realized it.

  23. Josh says:

    While I hesitantly agree to the rules (definitely worthy rules of thumb, but not concrete by far), these seem to assume that everyone acts and reacts in basically the same ways, which I have not found to be true.

    While unsure whether you read article comments, it would be interesting to get your take on something like Relationship Awareness Theory, which in a very simple sense classifies people by the tools they use to gain feelings of self-worth (which brings us around to the self-centeredness that you talk about).

    Someone who gains feelings of self-worth through socially visible personal accomplishments will have trouble relating to someone who feels self-worth when being the social hub to connect people. They each express selfish altruism in different ways, and could cross-communicate their blowups, even if they communicate it at all.

    It’s been personally valuable for me to gain an understanding of the languages and tools that people use to accomplish their altruism, and has in almost every case led to deeper, more meaningful relationships, so getting the input of someone I respect would lead to even greater understanding.

  24. Marshall-Mather100 says:

    Scott,

    You know what? I checked your rules, so here is the result:

    rule1: I have now 60%relationship, 30%Empathy and 10%Self-Directed. The result is I lost all my goods and money, I’m broke now man!

    rule2:Someone hated me I though his hidden intention was he loved me but then I suddendly got shooted on the legs, the guy was fucking serious man. I’m at the hospital now!

    rule3:I employed someone recently in my Jobs, he is working for 24h for £5 and he thinks it’s a win/win, dude the guy is fucking sick I kicked him!

    rule4:Dude you can’t believe me I showed my largest code for my bank security to 100 guys the guys didn’t remember my named but my bank been rubbed 100times which are them, did be carefull, people fucking have memory.

    rule5:That’s test was funny, went to the cemetery, picked 2 people, shooted on them, damn! No body screamed or cried.

    rule6:I have an obsessed guy among me, the fucking guy don’t stop to talk to his friends day and night, I wonder when the fuck he is alone!

    rule7: This is the last one, did I understand it?

    To conclure I would say, dude I can’t understand people!

  25. thanwordi says:

    As you wrote understand yourself you understand them. but how you do that if you most of the time feel LESS!or look like you give so much intention to the conversation in hope that you get them.

    The only trick that works for me is when you breathe normally as you don’t care of no one around.
    that selfish is good, I wish I could increase it.

  26. [...] paints a clear picture of human emotions and instincts. Psychology buffs, what’s your take? The Critical 7 Rules to Understand People [Scott H. [...]

  27. Kira says:

    Well yes, people don’t care about you until they decide they like you, and my friends accept me for who I am (I ditch those who don’t) so thanks, there really is no point in caring about what other people think. Okay i will go back to my life of selfish altruism now :-P (as for the “familial” category, my friends are worth helping more than some people I’m related too as many of my family members are insane)

  28. my 18-yr old son just old me that he doesn’t care about people, and that it worries him. compared to my other kids, yes, he is somewhat spoiled and can act entitled, but he genuinely wants some insight. trying to provide him with some useful guidance beyond reminding him that we’re all self-absorbed, that he is at an age where he is trying to find his place in the world, etc. anyone have any real wisdom to share? tia.

  29. euthex says:

    duh…..hey scott, i am 17 now and i have also started writting some of articles like you but i havent presented them to you, but your ideas are great than mine, and you inspire me alot dear scott. you impress me alot and i want to be like you.

  30. [...] one, we know you’re human. Which means you already think about yourself 60% of the time and only think about others 10% of the [...]

  31. Angela says:

    Very lucky I found and read your article today because this is very good article to teach people how to be able to understand people around us to avoid any misunderstanding when we communicate each other on any topic. By reading this article I know how to more appreciate even respect every person in order to get more success of every aspect in the life. Very very good article I’ve just found here.

    Kind regards,
    Angela

  32. tess says:

    You helped me understand about a lot of things and how to be more respectful towards people. Thank you!

  33. Abhishek says:

    Very very nice article…

  34. Sean says:

    Well written article. I am glad you wrote this. I was beginning to think that 90% or people are fake inauthentic. I can think more positively now in knowing that we are all self-absorbed. In that if I feel people are being “fake” that it’s not personal. On the other hand, how do we assess people who treat you differently from how they treat other people? i.e They may treat you improperly by ignoring you yet they show interest in other people, and they have many “friends.” Even though you make an attempt to be cool with them. That’s the part that doesn’t make sense to me.

  35. Chris m says:

    Anyone wants to be friends? I need and want some….. :-)

  36. Nimi says:

    Very well written. An honest insight to a truthful character but how many of us are willing to sacrifice further to those who are not interested to change for the better? Let alone read a decent article….

  37. scout says:

    Very good, but couple more things. Aging is a problem. Most die at 25 years old but are buried at 75 years old.

    My point is that aging is a disease that influences emotions, thinking and reasoning skills, drive and understanding. The victims of aging are the reason our neo-Marxist rulers continue to rule over us in today’s diluted ‘democratic’ cultures. Why? because of the above. People give up due to lack of drive and the death of reasoning.

    BUT most believe that they are getting smarter as the aging process progresses. Reaction formation, of course.

    The enemy is death and death comes LONG before the grave of nearly all of us.

  38. Ro says:

    A nice article.

  39. Great article.

    I was in search of positive words to help me stay focused with my current marathon training.

    Understanding interpersonal relationships and comprehending people’s motivations are harder than running a marathon!

    So thanks for providing a clear map to follow to a complex labyrinth of human interactions. :)

  40. Jack says:

    An older person once told the somewhat altruistic perpetually optimistic once twenty-something year old me, “dude, remember you are the only one worth a darn.” “That better not be true” I thought to myself.

    Well that tacky thing stuck in my head–like a secret proof I could occasionally yardstick life’s experiences with…and I still do…hoping to disprove it.

    I can honestly say that some people have gone out of their way to assist me. People are uncanny.

    De Nile isn’t just a river in Egypt–and the people pleaser me of course still has some very serious life questions, about felt obligation in spite of the evidence in this life’s road of sometimes stark discovery.

    For those of you who say they need a shoulder, I humbly offer mine–you are not alone–not at least in cyberland.

  41. nela says:

    I volunteer for numerous humanitarian causes and the pie chart depicting empathy does not stand in my case. I tend to empathize with others a lot. I am the one who gives sound advice, love and care to my friends and this is an objective view where my friends are concerned. When others have a problem, I take it on as if it is my own, dissect it and find a solution. However, my friends cannot reciprocate this behavior.

    It is unfortunate that the world is so self-absorbed. I can understand the seven points provided above but it is difficult being in my position- when I can empathize naturally and others cannot.

    I then inherit a tougher exterior to deal with others- so as to not show any weakness. I have adopted a philosophy to not lean on others for support because they tend to judge, compete or simply not care. I am yet to meet a person who does not behave in this way.

    The way I deal with it is to rely on myself and my family. To know where I stand with my friends, to re-establish boundaries and to enjoy time with the people in my life. Only rely on people you can trust 100%

    Good luck! :)

  42. Jeff says:

    I have dedicated my life to understanding people. The reason people do things that don’t benifit their bloodlines like volunteering their time and doing things to help others, is quite simple. It’s because they are selfish. They understand that they love people and that they believe in people and they do what they believe. Most people are busy judging people and that impairs their ability to understand people. When you understand people, you realize we are all people no one person is better or worse than the other. A person in need is a person. I also believe that understanding impairs judgment. The reasons babies grow so fast, is because until they are taught to judge, all they can do is understand. Judgment is learned through modeled behavior. Once a baby learns to judge people, they start to judge themselves and their learning slows down. On the flip side, when adults learn to understand, their ability to judge gets impaired. They then begin to understand people including themselves. This understanding of themselves allows them to control themselves.

  43. Jeff says:

    At Nella, the people who truly understands people, are people and do not need others to understand them. When one has self respect, that person does not need respect from others. That person can give respect away freely as they already understand where it comes from. When one loves themselves, they do not need others to love them. They already know where love comes from and they can give love away freely. With that being said, the other part is that people reciprocate behavior in the absence of fear. That is why some people seem to be able to give away so much more respect and love than others.

  44. major d brain says:

    illuminating!

  45. dtj says:

    Altruism a word i am still not familiar with just learned tonight is very inspiring but could not help notice the entire time reading this blog IIIIIIIII was thinking of IIIIIII(myself) the entire time….This frustrates me because we and us should be the number one thought at all times. We have survived as humans together for a very long time when did we start this selfish altruism???? Has it been around forever? Can we change?

    I read every article and comment on this page after googling understanding how people think and could not help myself from wanting to scroll down and just write my 2 sense.. compelled to stay up tonight after working all day, inspired by watching the movie steve jobs, and 25 days of sobriety i have come to the realization that i probably and most likely do not know a thing about my self and how could i understand people if i do not truly understand my self. knowing that everyone feels they are special is a very important quality i think we as a society should embrace.

    Ever feel like your emotions can not be expressed because of fear or wanted to speak up and did not? well in a life time us people do not have many of these situations were we actually speak up when we should. I think this should change and change fast.

    Let us as a unity stand up for what we believe in and DREAM BIG and just do it..

    people might be selfish,
    people might be afraid,
    but we are just people,
    and one day we will fade.

    DTJ

    DO THE JOB

  46. Angie says:

    I have never known why I always end up being the “giver” in a relationship. I can not work out why people don’t empathise easily like I always have. Thanks for shedding some light on a lifetime problem I have struggled with. If only ten percent of most peoples brains are geared for empathy how on earth is it possible to find real friendships? I am beginning to think this is not possible. And it explains why, when our 14 week old son died, people actively avoided us. We even had one friend (a social worker) who avoided the subject, refused to look me in the eyes or even ring us when he was told our baby died. I don’t know why people are so selfish. I really do not understand.

  47. claudia says:

    Read the the mastery of love by don miguel ruiz. Its a great book it helps you better understand why people do the things they do And to never take anything personal. People are dealing with their own insecurities and they like to point the finger at everyone but themselves.

  48. Mark says:

    To be completely honest, I had trouble getting past your word, “Duh”.

    You contradicted yourself right there, which in my opinion made you lose credibility as someone who purports to be on a campaign to IMPROVE the relations between people.

    You presented yourself as opinionated and less than educated with your leading sentence:

    “People Skills is About Being Nice, Friendly and Interesting, Duh!”

    Let’s analyze this sentence:

    ‘People Skills’ is plural, not singular. It should have been ‘people skills ARE’ rather than ‘people skills is’.

    If you are using ‘people skills’ as a singular item, such as a collection of skills assembled as one, to be recognized as a proper noun, as your capitalization seems to suggest, then perhaps “‘People Skills’ is a concept that is about being nice……” would have been less distracting.

    Furthermore, I would offer a different view of people skills:
    According to the Portland Business Journal, people skills are described as:
    *understanding ourselves and moderating our responses
    *talking effectively and empathizing accurately
    *building relationships of trust, respect and productive interactions
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/People_skills

    I don’t view anything on Wikipedia to be the final authority, but it certainly does represent what a majority of the people in the world think, which has to be given some consideration.

    If you expect the public to blindly accept your view of what ‘people skills’ means, then you should qualify your definition and try to use proper English.

    Finally, adding the word ‘Duh’ implies that anyone who does not agree with your definition must somehow be inferior to you, which simply comes across as another disgruntled ‘parrot’ who is chirping another worthless, repeated opinion.

    On the positive side, ANY person who truly endeavors to improve the relations between people has my utmost of respect and I believe that your intentions are pure.

    As a disinterested party to your article, I would simply offer to you that you might come across as more credible if you take out the negative element of ‘Duh’.

Debate is fine, flaming is not. Pretend that this comment form is a discussion taking place in my house. That means I enjoy constructive criticism and polite suggestions. Personal attacks, insults and all-purpose nastiness will be removed especially if it is directed at other readers.

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