Decided to finally start reading @anthonybourdain’s #KitchenConfidential while proctoring my students’ midpoint exam this evening. I’ve seen every episode of each one of Bourdain’s shows at least once, and some 4+ times...so I already knew he had a way with words. But I had no idea his writing was on par with the likes of J.K. Rowling (completely different genres and writing styles, of course). The four hours flew by and I probably will be reading Kitchen Confidential into the wee hours of the morning. I stepped outside onto the UC deck at one point to get some fresh air. This view just reminded me of the “be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle” quote. We sometimes think we understand what others are going through, but what we see is often merely a reflection of the image an individual is trying to portray to the world on social media. But what about that which goes on below the surface, beyond the reflection we sometimes mistakenly take as inight into someone else’s life? So much physical and mental anguish happens below the surface and is obscured from our view, from social media. Even those with the dream jobs, the ones with the perfectly-curated Instagram accounts, may be fighting demons you and I couldn’t even begin to comprehend. We have to remind ourselves not to judge others based solely on what we can see, because 1) if you believe in a higher power, judging is God’s job, not ours, and 2) people are SO MUCH more complex than their outward appearances, their careers, and their social media profiles suggest. We could all take a lesson from Bourdain and work harder to empathize with others, especially those who don’t look like us, who don’t think like us, and those whose political and religious views contradict our own. When you are suffering, a little empathy (not sympathy) can mean the world.
#empathy #understanding #bourdain #reading #goodreads #luminary #WWBD #bekind #mentalhealthawareness #mentalhealth #mentalhealthmatters #youmatter #suicideprevention #love #riseabove #wellness #reflection #voidlive #igersjax #outside #nature #ilovejax #jax #UNF