I read something interesting the other day. It was a conversation about how many different versions exist of the same person.
We form opinions about people we encounter based on our interactions with them—sometimes good, sometimes bad—but likely different from someone else’s opinion of that same person. Today as a result of social media there’s an additional dynamic of having a friend that you may have never met in person, yet you’re comfortable engaging with the screen version of them.
How do you decide which version of them is the true one?
It’s pretty simple. If you’re searching for the real person their actions and patterns need to match their words. What’s the history look like?
Pay close attention to red flags. Victim patterns like the plucky little thing tryin’ to get by but somehow always ending up as the victim. Does the world owe them everything just for existing? Are you their servant? Do they isolate you from your friends and family? Do their stories stay consistent or do they change when they’re caught in a lie? Are they capable of empathy?
So what do you do if you see this kind of history? Run. Run as if your life depends on it. Because it might.
Predators are chameleons skilled at finding and exploiting weaknesses. At first they will be whatever they think you want or need them to be. Don’t be fooled into thinking someone is the version they’ve presented you with unless their actions and patterns match.
I’m presenting the version of the above photograph to you as a coneflower.
Is it a coneflower?
I guess you’ll have to decide.