Tuesday, May 27, 2014

The Intent Theory

Friendships come and go throughout life and the objective is to keep as many as you can as long as you can. Many friendships disintegrate because the normal human brain is continually measuring the wrong information. We measure actions rather than intent.

The actions of other people leaves too much to be judged. Many actions occur because someone doesn't know how to act in a certain situation. Others act improperly as a reaction. No matter what, people's actions sometimes don't fit what their intent.

In an effort to better judge who should remain your friend and who should get crossed off the Christmas list, judge a person's intent. The intent is what really matters as the actual actions are merely a disguised version of what a person is feeling, and maybe the exact opposite of what a person is feeling.

For example, I remember the Thanksgiving I came home from my annual Turkey Day 10k to my wife who was excited that she baked special pumpkin muffins for me and my friends. She was so excited and I was so thankful that someone on this planet was actually going out of their way to attempt to make me happy.

Lo and behold, the muffins never rose, my wife felt like committing suicide, and all we had for breakfast was 1" slabs that were supposed to be muffins.

Many would have been ungrateful. Ah... not I. I knew that I didn't have enough people in my life who truly cared about giving to me, so this particular situation didn't register as a negative in any way, but a positive. Here was a situation of someone going out of their way to make my life better, and I could have cared less if they rose or not. I had someone who cared, and that's worth millions. The intent prevailed. The action didn't matter.

Next time you don't know whether you should be upset or not, judge the intent. Your job of figuring out whether you should ever talk or not in the future will become much easier.

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