No one wants to be the villain — the character who is capable of drawing dread, side eyes and behind-the-back whispers from others. The thing is, most of us would love to believe that we embody nothing but good traits, including qualities like having patience, kindness, humor, being able to keep calm, and more, especially in our friendships with others. But, I don’t know. Between all the social media and the world of instant gratification we live in, we’ve become programmed to be so self-centered that our manners have damn near died and such selfishness is making itself apparent in our friendships.
Since childhood I’ve had this weird tendency to sit and observe people. After hanging out with a person for a while, I’m usually able to pick up on their general nature, and even, at times, able to predict what they’ll do before they do it. It is from this that I have been able to figure out how selfish people can be towards their friends. The three main marks of selfishness I’ve picked up from general interactions with people tend to lie in the things they say.
“It’s not that…”
If any three words can be a mark of a self-centered conversationalist, those are it. They pop up when two or more people are gathered discussing a rather juicy topic. As one person tries to go on in detail about their opinions, there will be that selfish person who just has to cut them off with “It’s not that, it’s…”, dismissing the current speaker to share their views. This is the most prominent form of rudeness I find increasing exponentially in the general public. The worst thing you can do to anyone, especially a friend, is to act as if their thoughts do not matter. Whether you agree with your friend’s viewpoint on a topic or not, courtesy calls for you to let them speak freely and openly before you shut them down to play Mrs. Know It All. If you’re continuously cutting others off to shine, you may need to take time out to figure out what you’re trying to prove with such crass behavior, and how you need to curb it before you find yourself with no one to talk to at all. (Except those Facebook buddies who’ll comment on every little thing you put up. Don’t act like you don’t have those, we all do.)
As women, we have this subconscious way of zeroing in on a woman’s look, deducing her best traits and her not-so-good assets. I don’t think I have come across a woman, who whether or not she wanted to, has not possessed this ability. There are those amongst us who do this more often than others. Sistas, we know there are those who won’t waste a second to tear another down based on looks alone. You know them. The ones who won’t hesitate to whip out their phones to plaster a photograph of some unsuspecting soul they deem a “fashion fail,” on Twitter and Facebook for the wolves to feast on. If this is not a mark of ego and being self-centered, I’m gonna need y’all to utilize the comments section to let me know what is. For those who have friends like this, I advise to be wary of her. If she can violate others, she can violate you. To those who recognize this nasty habit within themselves: beware for we all reap what we sow sooner or later.
Lastly, we cannot forget the good ole “if you were my friend you would do ____ for me.” Let me blunt: there is no room for manipulation in friendship, or any relationship. If a person is continually trying to coerce you into doing something that will benefit them, but leave you feeling ashamed or disappointed in yourself, they are nowhere near being a genuine friend to you. Whether that means wanting you to get involved in their drama, wanting you to talk crazy about other people, etc. Sisterhood is not without its trials and tribulations, but with any partnership the give and take needs to be as close to 50 percent as possible. Anything substantially less is a waste of your time and feelings.
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