You DO NOT Have to Like Every Person You Meet!

Before we get started, I feel as though I must preface this article with, I do not mean that you should be cruel, or unkind to these people in anyway shape or form. I just want to acknowledge the fact that sometimes we have a gut feeling about someone, and I want everyone to know that it is okay to listen to what that feeling is telling us.

Of course, there is always going to be an exclusion to the rule; the kind of person who just seems to get along with everyone, and to that person I say, more power to you. I just simply am not that way, and I no longer feel ashamed to say that out loud.

Assuming we are all average human beings, they say we will live to be about 78 years old, give or take, depending on how you chose to live your life, and how well you maintain your health. So, let’s say you live to be 78, and in that time, they say we typically come across 80,000 people.

Let me repeat that: 80,000 people!

When you break that down and look at this on a micro level, that is 80,000 individuals with their own daily struggles, thoughts, feelings, loved ones, and experiences that have shaped them into who they are today. When you look at it from that perspective, I find it impossible to think that you could get along with every single one of those people. I do not mean this is in a negative sense; I mean this from a realistic standpoint – Let me note, that I would love to hear your defense to this in the comments if you disagree.

I am sure I could list off multiple occasions where I have felt the need to play a part because of the situation I was in, the people I was around, and the pressure I have sometimes put on myself to mold into someone I am not. This is in regards to someone I may be pursuing romantically, someone I have met in my professional career, a random stranger that I meet in a coffee shop, or it could just be someone I met through another friend, and I just could not seem to vibe with them. All situations that I am sure you have been in at least once in your life. It can be an awkward time trying to force something to work or make a relationship happen between someone you may not be too sure of yet, and I want to save you the time, and let you know that it is okay to not like these people. That doesn’t mean you have to be mean about it. It just simply means that you gave it a try, and you shouldn’t ever feel bad about it not working out.

There have been a handful of times where I have tried to make a romantic situation work when it was clear that it would never work out. I think as humans, we are inherently conditioned to react to the attention of other people, and we also tend to lose ourselves in that; or at least we can. We need to stop trying to force people to stay in our lives, and we need to stop thinking that every romantic relationship is going to stick, or the thought that it should. The whole point of life is to find people who understand you on a different level, and if you acknowledge that someone will never be able to do that, then don’t waste any more time than you need to. We need to trust more in the gut feelings we get about people and be willing to own up to the simple fact that sometimes we just don’t like someone. Why waste that person's time either? Let them down gently, and move forward.

I think one of the hardest relationships to balance would be the professional colleagues we encounter throughout our careers. This is also why it is so important for companies to have a certain ‘culture’ about them, so people trying to get a job there can decide beforehand if they fit that environment. I have been fortunate in some of the people I have met through the handful of jobs I have had, and for the last two years of my life, the company I have invested myself into. But like all jobs, there will be those that you just cannot find a common ground with, and it is perfectly okay to only have a professional relationship with someone. In my experience working with numerous personalities, from various types of backgrounds, I have learned that some relationships are only between the hours of 9 to 5, and when you leave for the day, you leave work at work. I am not saying that you cannot have friendships that thrive outside of your job, but I am saying that they don’t have to if there isn’t that kind of connection there.

Lastly, we should not feel pressured into liking someone just because, for example, a good friend of ours introduces us to them. This is to say that even your best friends, the people who understand you the most, will also have friends that may not understand you at all, and we don’t need to like the same people our friends do. We may feel that we need to because ‘why wouldn’t we if they seem to like them?’ Growing up, I was always very influenced by those around me. Sometimes that has worked out in my favor, while other times, that lead me astray. It is important to always remain true to yourself, even when around those who know the most about you. At the end of the day, we are our own person, and we should be able to make the final decision on whether we want to continue a certain connection or not.

Humans are messy creatures, and it’s as simple and as complicated as that. Why try to force certain relationships to happen, when we shouldn’t have to force anything to work as organically as certain connections should. Especially in regards to building relationships, it should be easy in the beginning to like someone. You don’t know them that well yet, and you are still trying to decide how they feel about you, so why are we fighting certain gut feelings about people? It is okay to get honest with yourself, and with those in your life. I think we forget how many people are truly out there, and how many connections we could be creating. Don’t waste time trying to keep a relationship alive, because not all connections are meant to continue. That is okay.

Thank you for reading. I appreciate you. I love you.

Megan Lawrence