Do you often feel misunderstood?
You’re far from the only person who feels that way. And you’re in good company. Some of the greatest thinkers in history – from Socrates to Vincent Van Gogh – have been misunderstood and even scoffed at for their ideas that seemed out of place at the time.
Well, as history has shown countless times, people are resistant to things that are different. Generally speaking, we tend to be cautious and judgmental about people that behave differently and have beliefs that oppose the norm.
Sadly, that often includes ‘deep’ people who think about things a bit more than the average person.
Let’s explore the issue more and take a look at 4 specific reasons deep individuals are often misunderstood and judged harshly – as well as what you as a deep person can do to combat this.
Reason # 1 – Deep people stand out.
Many people – particularly the generation that is now reaching adulthood – are detached from opinions about everything from religion to politics and beyond.
Simply put, many people view it as cool to not care about anything.
That makes people who think deeply about things and have strong opinions stand out like sore thumbs. We become easy targets for people to laugh at and call self-righteous, arrogant or opinionated.
So how do you deal with this while maintaining your insight and right to an opinion?
Well, for one, you can surround yourself with people who share that same level of care for the world around them. This will allow you to be surrounded by thought-provoking conversation that you’re just not going to get from people who don’t care.
With time and the help of your like-minded friends, the opinions of those who don’t care will matter less and less.
Reason #2 – Deep thought requires a lot more understanding than low-level gossip.
To gossip, you just need to pick a side. But to understand and engage with deep conversation, you need to understand.
Some people just don’t want to put that effort in.
And that’s okay – that’s there prerogative. As a deep person, grant them that right. It’s important to accept that to be understood is a privilege, not a right.
An easy way to keep this in mind is to remember a quote by James Blanchard Cisneros:
“Once you awaken, you will have no interest in judging those who sleep.”
Reason #3 – Not everyone is at the same stage in life.
I’m sure you can think back to a time when you weren’t all that deep. The notable change happened, for me, when a classmate in high school committed suicide. That’s when I began to think deeply about life and its purpose.
A good chunk of intelligence is developed through social events and life circumstances. And we don’t go through the same things at once. I can’t expect someone who didn’t have a traumatic experience like mine to think as deeply about mortality as I do.
It’s important, no matter how deep you think you might be, to be patient with other people. Let them experience the nuances of whatever stage they’re at.
Reason #4 – Sometimes deep people rub others the wrong way.
Let’s be honest here. Deep people are not always completely blameless when it comes to being misunderstood.
One of the key means used to affect social change is communicating accessibly. In other words, how you communicate your deep ideas plays a large role in their reception.
Communication of your ideas, no matter how deep, should not serve to inform the world of how deep and enlightened you are. Rather, the intent should be to engage in meaningful discussion that stimulates both parties.