Working with a precarious population makes the boundary between empathy and gullibility blurry.
See, there are people who are manipulative and deceitful in their words and actions to get what they want. I have seen this happen many times. However, how the person on the receiving end acts or reacts to the situations is what interests me.
A person who “falls into the trap” can be seen as gullible–believing every story that he or she is fed. Yet, the person who is actually make the decision to follow along could be emoting empathy. He or she could be seeing the best in the perpetrator and giving that person a chance he or she may not often have.
We make snap judgments about people and situations, and often times we are swayed by a person’s background or history. This becomes the basis of whether or not someone is empathetic or gullible. It’s one thing to blindly trust in everything someone says, and another give someone the benefit of the doubt.
Empathy can be misconstrued as gullibility, but is there a point when it morphs? Can empathy act as a precursor to gullibility? If so, at what point does it change from one to the other?
As part of my Self Discovery segment I have decided to tackle the question:
What are your dreams and aspirations?
I know, you’re probably expecting some grandiose, “world peace” kind of post, but this is not it. Yeah, world peace would be great and I support the efforts in achieving that, but it’s not my dream and aspiration. I’ve learned the hard way that setting impossible standards and unrealistic expectations only lead to disappointment, so my answer is pretty simple… or at least, achievable.
My dream and aspiration is to make a difference or lasting impression in at least one person’s life. I would like to reach more people, but the goal is at least a single person. I want to be able to bestow upon people a genuine kindness and caring that we don’t see very often in our world of violence and brutality. I don’t expect a chain reaction or to make waves, but I want to make at least one person feel like there’s hope.
I know what it’s like to feel helpless and hopeless, and if I can, I would like to make sure that at least one other person doesn’t have to feel that way. I want to be able to reach just one single person and them feel better about themselves, feel that they can dream big and meet their goals.
Yes, my dream and aspiration is tiny, but hopefully, it will be repaid in a big way. I believe that everyone deserves to feel like they belong and are understood, and I want to have the effect on someone. I may have already achieved my goal, but if I have, then I want to reach more people. How? Either through my writing, through conversations, and through in-person interactions. I am trying to influence as many people as I can with positivity and optimism. But the main goal is just at least a single person. That’s all.
What are your dreams and aspirations? Feel free to share in a comment!
Remember in elementary school when teachers gave us prompts for independent writing? Almost every year I had to answer the question, “Who am I?” Back then, it was a lot easier for me. I would talk about my family and my grade level, etc. My answer was superficial and it was always in relation to other people. I described myself in terms of the people in my life. Or, I described myself in terms of how society viewed me. As a kid, no big deal. As an adult now, it makes me shudder to think that as I was forming my identity at that age, most of it was reliant on how others perceived me–a figment of your imagination and a victim of your perception.
If you asked me to answer the question now, I would honestly answer, “I don’t know.” Seems like a cop out answer, but it’s not because it’s true. I don’t know who I am at this particular moment in time. A lot has happened in my life to make me rethink and reconsider how I view myself. So, I genuinely do not know who I am. It bothers me that I can’t answer the question, but it also gives me a journey to go on. Thus, introducing the first segment to the soon to be remodeled blog: Road to Self-Discovery. Cliche, I know, but I think it’ll be interesting. At least, for me it will. I don’t know if you’ll care all too much about me finding myself.
Anyway, the idea of this particular segment is that each week, probably on a Friday or over the weekend, I will choose a topic or prompt that will require deep introspection and reflection. As I answer them, I hope to slowly learn new things about myself. After every five entries, I will return to the question, “Who am I?” And slowly piece the response together. Once I feel like I have a pretty solid idea of who I am, I will compile it into a single entry to answer the big question.
I would like for you to take the time and think about the topic, too. Share a little bit about yourself if you feel so inclined and maybe start a journey of your own. Identity changes, so who you think you are might not be the reality anymore.
I just purchased the domain for my WordPress blog and am now the owner of a .com site. I originally wanted to get the domain from GoDaddy, but I would have had to add the hosting and figure out how to configure it to WordPress. Even more tedious, I would have to recreate the entire website and export all of my posts (if I wanted to keep them). So, I decided to simply purchase through WordPress because it would save me all the extra steps, especially because I would be using it’s platform for my website anyway.
So what does this really mean? Why purchase a domain if after almost two years I never did it? This means that I am revamping my website. It means I will be actively working on it and posting entries and sharing my writing. The template of the site I won’t reconfigure because I like the way it is, but the content will be sure to change. Obviously, I will continue to post my thoughts and ramblings, but I will be adding my writing and creating a more comprehensive representation of who I am and my vision for the website.
I am super excited for the new journey. Hope you are too!