Read the friggin’ book!
Written by Melanie Naismith on 21 October 2020
How often do you judge a book by its cover? Books aren’t just made to be looked at, they can bring great joy if you sit down and take the time to read them.
We are judgemental by nature and it’s natural to judge immediately what’s been put in front of you.
Within 5 – 7 seconds of meeting, people will have a solid impression of you. Or a perception.
Some research suggests a tenth of a second is all it takes to start determining trustworthiness. That’s f..k all to go off.
People will judge me in a manner of varying ways probably also in accordance to their influences perceptions and also maybe what they are potentially threatened by or what is different. I think because of this I’m also often more inclined to be drawn to what’s unique and different. I still judge people right away like everyone else. I’m aware of it. It’s maybe differently than the normal parameters but I still do it. I do try very hard not to let my initial judgement stop me from talking to someone and finding out their story. I’m sure it’s partly because I’m also judged heavily and it bugs me that people will put into a box without actually getting to know the multifaceted layers to me. That same courtesy is not always reciprocated, this also bugs me.
There are a number of ways I’m interpreted. I’m very chatty and playful, this can come across as ditzy, flirtatious, like I don’t have a care in the world. Depending on what I’m doing I may come across as bossy, airy fairy, obnoxious, confident, independent, and different.
I dress very simple, scruffy, so I blend a bit and not draw attention, that’s a strategy. I’m more comfortable like that and I’m loud enough I don’t need or want any extra unwanted attention, be it negative or otherwise.
I remember having been talking to a band member several times for interview etc promoting his music or MCing some gigs. The nature of these interactions were often playful and fun and me “playing a fool” (that’s important, I play into that).
One day we were talking and he just looked at me wide eyed and goes… “You’re actually quite smart aren’t you?” Like he was an alien discovering earthlings for the first time.
It threw me, pissed me off a little bit but ultimately, it was good that he could change his mind. Not everyone is capable of or open to that. Some people will make that judgement and stick with it. Sometimes it’s even a judgement made or influenced by someone else’s judgement. Don’t do that, you are the best person equipped to seek knowledge for yourself.
I often get told I ask too many questions, but genuinely I’m supremely curious about things and particularly people. People and what makes them tick, fascinates me. I seek knowledge to understand not to judge. The more questions I ask the more likely I’m able to develop a rapport with a new complete stranger as I’ve got multiple segues from other conversations I’ve previously had.
Why do we judge? When you judge another, you do not define them, you define yourself.
Judging is simply our attempt to create a hierarchy of better than / less than, superior to / inferior to. We can put someone down by judging them negatively and in turn it makes us feel better about ourselves.
Making choices based on observing and evaluating other people is such an important skill. But when you judge constantly from a negative view you will always be conditioning yourself to see the negative. Even in yourself. It’s toxic shit to hold on to.
The happiest people I know are evaluating and improving themselves. The unhappy ones are usually evaluating and judging others.
Recently I’ve had my own pre-conceptions blown out of the water and someone was also brave and bold enough to see beyond my exterior and potential for something different.
I interviewed the Lady who puts on The GO Fashion Show, way outside of my normal world and comfort zone, but also that’s why it intrigued me. I wanted to know more about it and promote it to others that may or may not know that we have such amazing things happening in the Albury Wodonga Region. I’d watched the show the year before and to be honest the whole world seemed intimidating and so impressive. The woman behind it Bernadette Torresson was, in my perspective, in a very superficial and ego driven world.
What happened from me asking questions was I found out that judgements were wrong, yes she loved fashion but the pure emotion in her voice about trying to grow and nurture models and create an avenue for community business really struck a chord. She looked different to me. Had a different pool of interests. But our values were similar.
Next thing I know I’m sitting there in a flannelette shirt. Talking high end fashion runway and she looks to me and goes. You are going to MC this. She saw beyond the exterior and had looked into the depth of the conversation and saw potential. At the time I thought she was joking, I didn’t really think it was real. I was probably looking as scruffy as I ever had and even jumped on a chair for a photo with her. I’d even talked about my hate for wearing anything other than active wear.
Everything about this scenario seemed surreal. Even when I told my mum she said “What she saw you in person, as you are, in a flanny and asked you to do a fashion show? As a real person?” It was so far out of my comfort zone, I knew I had to do it. The idea panicked me, but I also knew from talking to Bernie that the motive behind this show was pure as opposed to the exterior perception.
It’s funny if people keep seeing you in one way you begin to see yourself like that as well. You question others backing you. After Bernadette bestowed her project onto me I immersed myself in the world and opportunity and had my judgements on the industry blown, It was a supportive collaborative environment and watching the personal growth of some of the young models involved was amazing. Obviously the industry is aesthetically driven, but there are real people involved.
You can’t tell the quality of the contents of a book just by looking at the material used to hold it together. A book with a plain cover and simple title may be more important, more entertaining, or more useful than book bound in a flashier manner.
Judge a book by its cover and you may as well be judging an author by the only book they ever wrote.
Reading it is important because it develops our thoughts, gives us endless knowledge and lessons while keeping our minds active. Books can hold all kinds of information, stories, thoughts and feelings unlike anything else in this world.
Open your eyes then your minds.