Do you feel misunderstood by people all the time? Everything you say seems to be interpreted wrongly.
When you share something about yourself, you feel judged by others? Do you feel like no one understands you.?
Don’t worry, I’ve been in your shoes too. Being an introvert, I understand it is easy for others to misunderstand introverts. When I was young, I could never understand myself. I couldn’t get why others could have so much fun in groups while I could happily enjoy being alone reading books. I didn’t know why I’m so imaginative, abstract and different.
How do I get others to understand me when I couldn’t even understand myself?
I couldn’t blame others for not understanding because even I couldn’t understand myself at that time. For the most part of my life, I’ve been seeking to understand myself better. And now that I comprehend who I am spiritually and personality-wise, I don’t feel hurt being misunderstood anymore.
1. Get to Know why you need people to understand you.
Why is it important for someone to understand you?
I realized I am not really upset when people don’t understand me. The real problem is, I felt a lack of love, connection, and support from others. For example in my case me and my dad always have understanding issues. I wanted approval from my dad, and sadly I wasn’t given. When I asked him about my decision to date a guy who is a waiter. He rather said “You can never make good decisions.” It would have been fine if he could have said, “I don’t understand what you are doing, but I respect your decision.”
Showing more love and acceptance with yourself may be more important than getting people to know you.
2. Understand how you contribute to the misunderstandings.
I have this habit, where I sense that the other person doesn’t understand or isn’t patient enough to listen to what I have to say. I usually prefer to not share much about myself. But by doing so, I might have contributed to the misunderstandings too.
Before you blame others for not understanding you, you could look at how you contribute to the misunderstanding. If you really want others to get you, change the way you communicate with others. Be more explicit and open.
3. See whether the person is interested in understanding you.
Not everyone is willing to listen or open to new ideas. Some are very focused with their point of view and it’s really no use to get them to understand.
Don’t feel hurt when someone does that, especially if you are highly sensitive or empathetic. They are not intentional. Not everyone is as empathetic as us. Not everyone is a good listener. It’s better to lessen our expectations from others.
4. Don’t go about the need to explain.
There are times when people are interested to know you, but they just don’t get you. There is really no need to get frustrated over that. Being interested in you and asking what is there? shows that they care about you. You do your best in explaining, but if they don’t get you, it is okay.
Just let them be. Let them laugh at how crazy you are. In David Keirsey’s book, Please Understand Me II, he mentions the Pygmalion Project. We all want people to be more like us. Be it more compassionate, more reasonable, more dutiful and spontaneous. The best is actually understanding other people’s differences’ and respect their differences’.
5. Focus on oneness, not the differences.
The reason why we feel so hurt when people don’t understand us is that we emphasize too much on the differences. You see yourself as an individual and everyone else as someone other than you.
One day, I was strolling in the subway and could feel this deep relatedness with the crowd. It’s beautiful. Usually, I avoid crowds, I still do. But that day, I felt the oneness with everyone on the subway. Anyhow, we all belong to the same base.