Wednesday, 8 July 2015

My American Adventure: Dealing with unfriendliness

This was supposed to be a video post but I haven't had chance to sit down and record it. I am very busy this week, leaving early in the morning and arriving back at night, so I am writing this for you all instead. I hope I can express myself as well as I'd like to. 

I am a friendly person. I like to talk to people, get to know and learn from them. My city and where I work is quite friendly, with  exceptions of course! It's not difficult for me to make new friends  and interact with people because I am an open and approachable person person.

The first two weeks here in New York weren't easy because I noticed that in certain areas that I was sent to work and some of the people I met were not friendly at all. It's one thing if it's a cashier at the shop or a passer by on the street who ignores you when you ask for directions, because the likely hood of you seeing them again is minimal, but when it's someone you're expected to work with or you see day in, day out, it's very uncomfortable and even hurtful.

 I didn't understand it until two friends of mine helped me to see that unfortunately there are people who just don't see us worth getting to know. They do not notice us, we are insignificant to them and therefore they don't make any effort to talk to or befriend us, no matter how much we try. Some people are set in their ways and happy with the circle of friends they are used to.

However, this should not stop us from being ourselves and continue to be friendly and kind to others, regardless of how they respond to us. Later on, the same people that rejected our friendliness may need it (and they will remember us). Better still, we will find people out there who will appreciate us for who we are, people who will embrace our friendliness and accept a friendship with us. They may even turn out to be the best friends we ever had.

This experience helped to thicken my skin with situations like this. I have never been exposed to so much coldness, rudeness and indifference as I have since being here, but I am thankful for the experience because I would have never realized it was something that I had to deal with. I value myself much more, the unique qualities I have been gifted with and I now have this mindset of giving without expecting anything in return.

 Kindness is like a boomerang. When you give it, it will come back to you. Maybe not in the same way or by the same people who we showed kindness to, but it will come back to  us.

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