A friend of mine was complaining one time about how they have a hard time making friends and about how they feel shunned by crowds. This friend prompted an intriguing social study on my part.
I’ve always been a people watcher as an adult, so I’ve taken many mental accounts of social behaviors, some of which I will share with you in a moment. I watch how people treat others, mainly because it helps me to better understand why I experience certain things in social environments.
Understanding social triggers helps in understanding social behavior.
Like, for example, I’ve always noticed that overweight people are more disrespected than others. They get stares and sneers that others don’t get.
People seem to accept unattractive- thin people more than they accept attractive- overweight people. When I refer to someone being “attractive or unattractive,” I am referring to their face.
Have you ever looked at someone and thought, “Wow, if she lost weight she would be absolutely beautiful!”
Well, I look at someone and think instead, “She has a beautiful face.” A persons beauty is still there, even if they are overweight, it is just simply covered.
Although I may notice the fact they are overweight, I don’t usually see that as a reason to discount their positive traits. Weight covers beauty, it doesn’t remove it.
The general public however, does not see it that way.
My husband, for example, just notices a person’s weight and doesn’t even notice their attractive features beyond that. I have a male friend who is also like that. He doesn’t see past the weight.
I have known other men though, who like chubby women and think they are cute because their boobs and butts are bigger, rounder or even bouncier.
The statement beauty is in the eye of the beholder is most certainly true.
It all has to do with what features the person notices. I tend to notice a persons best feature first. Some people notice it last. Men who notice breasts, will probably find a heavier set woman more appealing than a thin one.
Men who notice the body shape first will probably find a thinner woman more attractive.
People who notice a face or the overall characteristics of a person, like I do, will not be as turned off by a person’s body whether heavy or thin.
I see past a persons weight. I see personality, the face, their ability to make me laugh, etc. A person is made of so much more than their body. When I met my husband, I looked to see if he was cute, certainly. But I also got to know him as a person before allowing myself to be attracted to that cuteness because who he is overall is what mattered to me the most.
As a matter of fact, I have known several people that I found to be attractive that most other people did not because I was looking at the overall person.
The general public, on the other hand, is turned off by an outward appearance that insinuates that the person doesn’t take care of themselves such as when someone is heavy. It isn’t just men who react this way, it is women as well.
I’ve never personally known it to be true as much as I did last year when I hit my all time high of 190 pounds.
Obese for my height.
Health issues caused me to go down hill pretty fast and I went from healthy and spry to an all time low. Depression was my biggest issue because I felt bad and was in pain all the time. Anyone who has pain knows how debilitating it can be. Widespread inflammation caused entire body pain and the heavier I got, the worse it got.
To this day, I struggle with my weight because of health issues. I’ve had several surgeries trying to repair what I can but I still battle with a list of things that fight against my weight.
I lost 48 pounds on the keto and low-carb diets in 2018. I have steadily gained some of that back despite remaining on a low-carb diet and only eating one to two times a day.
Admittedly, my biggest problem is sweet cravings; otherwise I eat very healthy. I have now well trained myself to avoid bread, rice, pasta, anything made with flour, and I try to avoid sugar at least on a daily basis.
My cravings get overwhelming at times due to low blood sugar symptoms as well as the hormone and thyroid issues I have. I’ve also had insomnia for the past two years.
If you know anything about how the body works, you’ll understand that insomnia causes the body to find energy in other ways than sleep. Namely from food. I have been sleeping well about 3 nights out of 7. I have usually been getting about two hours of sleep on those other four nights, so you can imagine what my body craves on those days.
Yep, you guessed it-sugar! I have to use ALL of my will power on those days to fight against it and not give in to the carbohydrate cravings.
Of course, the people around you and out in public have no idea what you’re going through. A stranger at the grocery store doesn’t know you’re sick, in pain, or dealing with issues such as this, they just know that you are overweight. People are selfish and will judge you based only on what their eyes can see.
The pics you see here were taken about two years apart. I am not sure you can tell like I can from these pics but health issues affected my hair, weight, and the overall way I carry myself. I know I’m getting older but the change is more from not feeling well.
I’ve always been at least averagely attractive. Not model material by any means but I can carry myself well when necessary, and I have enough confidence to know who I am and what I’m made of despite my looks.
Because of this, I wasn’t accustomed to the behavior I experienced from others once I became overweight.
I kid you not, for the first time ever in my life I had doors slammed in my face, more than once. Men stopped looking at me, opening the door for me, and being nice to me- totally the opposite of what I was accustomed to.
Women were just downright rude and mean. I had people literally bump me out of the way, get in front of me in line, and say mean and rude things to me as though I didn’t matter; as though I had no feelings.
Now keep in mind I probably put off a negative aura to some degree because I was in pain but I’ve always tried to be kind to others no matter how rude they were to me so I don’t believe it was triggered by anything but my looks.
I have never in my life been treated as rudely as I was then. I even had neighbors stop talking to me, shun me, and stop waving at me as they passed by.
I didn’t understand it at first but the heavier I got, the worse it got. I would believe it was all in my head, except for the fact that it all stopped once I lost the weight several months later.
Poof- people were nice again.
It doesn’t take a genius to put two and two together.
Weight issues are a number one turn off in a social setting. I’ve watched how people react to overweight people in public and usually they are semi-nice to their face, and then as soon as the person turns their back they stare at them or even make faces at them and point and talk about them.
I’ve heard people say rude things like, “Slob,” “Hulk smash,” and so many other rude things as the overweight person walked away. As though, it made them feel better about themselves to downgrade that person.
Rude, cruel, and selfish if you ask me but it doesn’t change the fact that’s the way it is. People view psychical flaws as weakness and it is the perceived weakness they are putting down and judging.
I admit, excess weight on a person does make them appear weak either in their eating or exercise habits. But after being sick, I know from experience that being overweight doesn’t always come from making a choice to be that way.
I’ve found there are other reasons as well as to why crowds shy away from certain people and I would like to share those reasons with you in a moment.
Besides being overweight, there are other social cues that tell others you don’t take care of yourself. If you don’t take care of yourself, people see this as a negative thing; because, well, it is.
Self-improvement is proven to help you with confidence issues. We should always strive to better ourselves; whether spiritually, emotionally, or physically.
Knowing where the problem is can help you to become communally resilient.
Acceptance of Ourselves
We are a three-part being; soul, spirit, and body. In order for all three to work in sync with one another, we must take all of these parts into account and nurture them.
What does our spirit, soul, and body need?
Our spirits need guidance and direction among other things. Our bodies need exercise and good nutrition in the form of food, vitamins, and water. Our soul needs stability, love, and many other things in order to thrive.
All of these things make us who we are. Leave one of them out and we are not whole. I guarantee you if you are socially awkward, there is something about one of these parts you are ignoring and not taking care of.
Let’s put the scenario where health issues are a problem- aside, let’s just say instead that the issue is with self-neglect. People may not even realize why they are shunning you but self-neglect is socially evident. If you don’t love or respect yourself, how can you expect others to love or respect you? It begins with you.
People constantly blame others for what they fail to do but if you fail to love yourself, the problem is with you; not everyone else. You can’t expect others to accept you for who you are if there is something about you that is out of balance.
Accepting an out of balance person for who they are will never happen in a social setting. Harsh, but that’s just the way it is. Why? Because people don’t notice their own flaws and faults the way that they notice yours.
I’ve come to the conclusion that I don’t have to improve myself to be socially accepted because who really cares what they think? I do, however, try to improve myself because it helps me to accept myself for who I am. See the difference in motivation there?
Don’t do it for others, do it for YOU. Then others will notice. So you get the benefit but don’t let it be the motivation.
Improving who we are should be a daily effort. It’s what breakfreedaily.com is all about. My goal is to help you break free from a negative mindset first and foremost, but if you can improve other things as well, then let’s get it done.
This list was compiled from all the many people I’ve known throughout the years and from watching how crowds respond to certain people.
The cold hard truth as to why someone may NOT want to be your friend:
Reason # 1. YOU HURT THEM IN THE PAST: Once you hurt someone it may be hard for them to trust you enough to let you back into their social circle. People tend to trust once. After that they put up a guard to protect themselves.
2. YOU’RE AN IDIOT: I am not trying to offend you and I am not calling you an idiot either. I am just saying there are idiots in this world who don’t realize that’s what they are being. Please allow me to give you the definition of “idiot.” It means that you are someone who acts in a self-defeating or in a significantly counterproductive way.
Some people are so accustomed to being counterproductive that their unordinary way of thinking actually seems normal to them.
People normally don’t realize they’re an idiot because they are so busy blaming everyone else for their deficiency in human character that they are blinded by their own choices.
An idiot normally thinks everyone else is an idiot. A good way to check to see if you’re an idiot is to ask your closest friends and relatives. Throw everything you think you know about yourself out the window. Trust your friends and family to be honest with you and help you see where you need to change.
My experience is that idiots don’t change because they don’t WANT to change or listen to reason. If you are sitting there telling yourself that everyone else is an idiot, then you’re probably the one I’m talking to. 😉
3. YOU ARE TOO POOR: I know this seems harsh but many people who were raised in a wealthy atmosphere may not be a friend to the less fortunate for many reasons.
One possible reason is that they feel it brings them down. Typically the mindset of someone who is financially comfortable and the mindset of someone who is not, are different.
Many times an astute person may feel that someone less fortunate spends too much time feeling sorry for themselves rather than working toward changing their situation.
They feel like they are lowering their standards if they take time out to be a friend to someone who isn’t on the same level. After all, you are no better than the crowd you run with and many people who were raised in a comfortable environment are taught that.
I seriously don’t think this should be taken personally though; it’s harder to be with people if you don’t have very much in common with them.
On the other hand, it is also very common for someone with money to have a very large ego to go with their large bank account. People who just simply don’t like you because your asset column isn’t full enough are people who place their sense of value on the dollar and really aren’t secure in themselves as a person or they’re overly secure and egotistical.
A person like this will just make you feel bad about yourself, as though you are not good enough because you don’t have enough. You are better off without them, trust me.
4. YOU ARE TOO WEALTHY: Wealth can be intimidating to others who may not have had the same privileges. If you are showy with what you have, this is your first mistake. Most people like down to earth personalities. No matter how much or little you have, you can still be friendly, confident, and even hospitable.
If you go around telling people how much you make in a year or how large your 401k is, this will keep them from getting close to you. No one likes competition or showy one-up you kind of people. I know several people like this and I gently try to tell them this is a turn-off. The problem is people who are like this don’t see it as a problem.
5. YOU LACK SELF CONFIDENCE: A person with a negative self-image will reflect it in their conversations and appearance. If you are down on yourself you give others the awareness of your faults. These negative vibes will keep people from wanting to hang out with you. Instead of focusing on your negative aspects, focus on the positive. Focus on all the reasons why someone should want to be your friend. This will create a better atmosphere for friendship.
6. YOU HAVE BAD BREATH OR BAD HYGIENE: I once knew a sweet lady who wanted to be my friend. I tried real hard to hang out with her and give her that friendship that I knew she desired but to be quite honest, I just couldn’t handle her breath!
I loved her so much and I tried to bring myself to tell her but she was so sweet that I didn’t want to hurt her feelings or cause her to have insecurities. She was the kind of friend that wanted to talk face to face and I just couldn’t handle it.
I hate to admit it now that she has passed away, but instead of being honest with her back then, I just gradually stopped hanging out with her. Just in case you are one of these unknowing people please take my advice and do not insist on talking face to face with people.
Brush your teeth and use mouthwash often enough that people do not have to avoid the up close and personal moments. Do not feel like you have to be at someone’s ear for them to hear you.
They sell small Listerine strips that you can keep in your pocket and place on your tongue whenever you are unsure of the condition of your breath. If someone avoids you it may simply be personal hygiene keeping them away. Wear deodorant and shower daily. You can’t always smell your own body odor so use it even if you are not sure. (Common sense is a thing of the past therefore this article, however trivial, is very necessary.)
7. YOU ARE PERVERTED: Any sense of perversion will keep people away. A perverted mouth is my number one turn off. A person who makes perverted gestures, uses perverted body language, or suggests perverted things, will definitely have an insufficient friend list.
If you are “open-minded” and think for a second it’s okay to publicly display your “open-mind” then you are one of the people I am referring to. It isn’t okay to make a move on one of your “friends” and it isn’t okay to suggest that they help you play out sexual fantasies or perverted exploits. It isn’t okay to use your friends in your perverted scenarios. Period.
It isn’t okay to show your private body parts in public either.
A couple of years ago a pimp and his lady of the night, who was obviously prostituting herself out, showed herself to my boys!
I quickly found the security guard and explained to him if he didn’t make her leave, I was going to put her face into the brick wall and promised him there WOULD be a scene if he didn’t handle it.
I don’t believe in fighting for no reason but showing your private body parts to a child is actually a felony. This mother don’t play around with my children’s safety.
On another trip out, I recently had a run in with a girl who was literally bending completely over in front of my husband and allowing her blouse to hang wide open in front of him and in front of me! She was bending over like in a yoga pose also making sure that her backside was noticed.
That is not only a good way for people to want to shun you, that is also a good way to make a man’s wife grab a hand full of your bleach blonde hair and yank some sense into that tiny little brain. I’m just saying.
I heard someone once say, “Just pray for people like that.” You think Im going to stand there and allow that to happen right in front of my face and do nothing but pray? NOT gonna happen. That’s for religious people with no back bone.
I don’t care how pretty you are, you do NOT have the right to show your body parts off to other people. Don’t be stupid. That’s also a good way to get raped. If you are that stupid, I will be bold enough to tell you how stupid it is.
8. YOU HAVE TERRIBLE TASTE IN THE OPPOSITE SEX: More times than not people pick mates that their friends do not like. Most of us don’t really care if others like our mate or not because, after all, we are the ones who have to spend time with them.
But your mate could be the very thing keeping people away. The best way to tell is to notice whether or not your friends hang out with you more when you are alone.
If they avoid you when your mate is near they could just be trying to give you space to be alone but probably not. They probably just don’t know how to tell you that you are dating a jerk. If you are married to a jerk, well then I guess you are just stuck. You will have to pray for him/her and that your friends will learn to tolerate it out of love for you.
9. YOU ARE A KNOW-IT-ALL: People who talk as they know everything about everything are usually overly talkative and are full of somewhat useless information. This can be very annoying, especially if the one you are conversing with just wanted a simple answer and you load them down with a lecture with a whole lot of information that wasn’t necessary.
No one wants to feel like they are back in college and they probably didn’t meet your acquaintance with the intentions of soaking up all of your wisdom and knowledge. It’s probably a good idea to cool it a bit.
You don’t have to overwhelm people with your knowledge to look smart. A know-it-all is usually mistaken for a jackass, whether they are or not because their mouth is constantly moving. Take my advice- A truly wise person keeps their mouth shut more often than not. A smart man keeps his words few.
10. YOU ARE BORING: You may be one of those people who just simply don’t know enough, which is the polar opposite of #9. People who lack education may not be able to keep up with the conversation at hand.
Most people like to be intrigued in conversation. They like to meet others who have wit and charm and who have an attention span longer than that of a two-year old. I personally like to talk about a variety of things with someone who has the ability to jump from one topic to another without being stumped by it.
I’ve been raising children for most of my life now including my little brother and my sisters kids that I used to babysit. I sometimes would forget to have a life of my own. When my kids were small, I remember accidentally talking baby talk to an adult.
That’s when I knew it was time to get a life outside of my home. Don’t limit yourself so much that you become just a boring mom. Our identities should not hang on what we do as parents. You went out before the kids were born, right?
Don’t stop having leisure time just because you are a parent now. Even if you stay at home, continue to educate yourself and keep up with current events and remain socially interactive. Use whatever means necessary to keep yourself interesting.
11. YOU ARE TOO SHY: For years I had a problem with this. As an abused and neglected child I was socially awkward. I was so shy I was afraid to look at people in the eye. I was afraid of rejection so I would choose to remain withdrawn from others and be a loner.
The way to pull yourself out of this is to begin talking to people every chance you get. Say hello to people as you enter a room or shake someone’s hand when you have the chance to meet them instead of staring at the ground. It may be hard at first but teaching yourself to overcome social awkwardness will actually help you to appear friendlier and more pleasant.
Force yourself to look at others no matter how you feel. Fear can only be overcome by pushing against it. Try things you are afraid of. Being shy is just simply fear. The way to overcome fear is to face it.
The way to stop being afraid of rejection is to face rejection. Stop being controlled by it and dive into a social media of some sort and start talking to people. Practice online if you must. Go to meetings and parties and introduce yourself. The worse that could happen is they could walk away but if they are that rude you don’t need their friendship in the first place.
12. YOU HAVE UNRULY, SPOILED-ROTTEN KIDS: No one really likes hanging out with someone who has spoiled rotten kids who can do no wrong. If you don’t see the wrong your kids do it will probably be hard for you to keep other friends who have kids, especially if they are realistic parents who actually discipline their kids.
It will be hard to see eye to eye with the parents of disciplined children because they will more than likely expect you to discipline yours to some degree.
I know your angels do not deserve to be treated as though they are the bad guy but I highly doubt they are the good guy at all times. I guarantee you their little hearts will heal if you use that paddle every once in a while and your friends just might thank you and want to hang out with you more.
13. YOU CURSE A LOT: I personally don’t like to be around a lot of cursing. It puts off a negative energy that changes the environment. It causes negative feelings as well as being rude. If you curse, this may be one reason certain people don’t want to be around you. Consider your own ways.
13. YOU HAVE JACKASS SYNDROME: Being a jackass or if you are the opposite of a jackass, a witch (female jackassedness) will keep people from getting close to you.
It is sad that I have to make this part of the list; you would think it would be common sense. There is a difference between goofing off with people and just simply being a jackass and making everyone else the butt of a joke. My son does it all the time and I know how it feels. I’ve tried and tried to warn him that people don’t like being treated that way.
No one likes to feel like they are being picked on. And for all of you jackasses here’s a hint: No one likes to be harassed, threatened, followed, watched, or bad-mouthed so if you are doing any of these things it is definitely going to make you come across as a crazy person.
For those of you who answer people abruptly or spit out an aggressive answer or comment before understanding the question, please know that being rude to people shows a lack of class. If you have Jackass Syndrome here are some things you can do to overcome it:
- Treat others the way you treat your girlfriend or boyfriend (surely you treat them well, I hope).
- Be polite and say thank you and please.
- Do not poke constant fun at people; instead make the joke about you if you must.
- Don’t be negative about other people.
- And finally keep your mouth shut more often, I am sure it will help you to stop running people off.
No matter what personality you may have, having friends in life is very important, sometimes maybe even more important than the need to “be yourself.”
Don’t run people away with arrogance, pride, or with know-it-all or jackass patterns. Break these patterns so that you can live life to the fullest. If you need help (a filter over your mouth for example), try praying about your jackass syndrome.
Pray that God will help you to overcome your poor behavior, or whatever socially awkward problem you are having. If people don’t give you the time of day, there is probably a reason. And I guarantee you the whole world is not the problem.
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