Shadow Games: How to be an Effective Judge of Character

By Jontae Grace

In matters of love, questions of trust, honesty and integrity always fall under your mate’s umbrella – whether they are trustworthy, whether they lie to you or not, etc. But one little-known truth is this: whether you trust someone or not has more to do with the type of person YOU are than the type of person they are. The joy and excitement of meeting and dating a potential mate has been overshadowed by the fear that they might harm you emotionally, or come with life-changing consequences. Breakups with exes are becoming less amicable and uglier than ever because of the hurt, pain and blame slung back and forth. But no one can be persuaded to love against their will, and the one you go for is the one that you will end up with. If you aren’t satisfied with that, you can change it by learning how to accurately gauge a person’s true nature, to protect yourself from those with rotten cores and malicious intentions.

The first thing you must do is switch perspectives. We tend to give too much power to our mates when we experience a hardship, but your relationship should always be viewed through the lens of YOU, not the lens of them. My $0.02 has always taken a you-centered approach to life and love, for the simple reason that people come with an x-factor, an element that you cannot control. They have their own agendas, their own baggage, and their own demons to deal with. Thus, no matter how good of a lover you are and how much affection you show, you are still subject to a certain degree of vulnerability when dealing with another human. And while that may be part of the excitement of new love, it definitely comes with an ugly underbelly, should you ever experience it.

Instead of grasping at straws, we focus on the element you have total control over: yourself. You must begin to trust your judgment, your instincts, and your choices. If you aren’t fully confident, then you can to sharpen those skills by paying closer attention to character clues that people leave. Look at what a person truly values in life, not what they profess to value. Pay attention to what he or she spends their time, resources and energy on – that will tell you where their priorities lie. No one can wear a mask forever – eventually they will reveal their true selves.

When looking outward, start to identify a person’s traits like items at a grocery store – both positive and negative. Separate and isolate them into two categories: superficial and substantive. For example, a man who makes good money but stingy with sharing are two different traits. The first is superficial; a person who earns a decent salary is relatively meaningless. You can find any man with a little paper, it doesn’t mean he is the one for you. But the second trait, whether or not he is generous with what he has to those around him, is a major character trait that gives deep insight into the type of person you are dealing with.

Once you have a good character sketch, then you can begin to analyze this information with a keen eye on compatibility with your life. For this, you must have a good understanding of your own traits and priorities. What type of characteristics make you truly happy? What do you truly value in life? Do you sleep naked? These are all questions that you must answer before you can accurately judge another person’s eligibility for your life.

Lastly, you must look at who the person is today, not who you wish for them to become tomorrow. This is the hardest issue that both men and women grapple with. We all want to see the best in our lovers, but it is also important to see the whole package. Once you have an idea of a person’s positive traits, you can bundle them together to see their potential. Doing the same with their negative traits will tell you the risk you run by becoming involved with them. Most people stop there, but you have to take the next logical step: compile their positive and negative traits to see who the person is who stands in front of you at this moment. You can’t bank on the future or dwell on the past; you can only work with the NOW. If that person still appeals to you, then take it to the next level. If not, then you know what you gotta do.

At the end of the day, you are the only person you control. Everyone wants a positive, healthy relationship, but few are willing to make the necessary mental and emotional changes to attract it. You know what feels right for your life, the type of person worthy of giving your heart to. When considering a potential mate or the compatibility of a current one, you must look through your heart’s lens to determine whether their package vibes with yours. Just because two people are both good ones does not mean that they are good for each other. And just because you found a good one does not mean that you are ready for them.

How you gon’ win if you ain’t right within?

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11 Comments Add yours

  1. Andrew Fernino says:

    Enlightening advice. Perfect timing for myself. Thanks. And thumbs up on the appropriate Lauryn Hill quote! Lol

    1. Jontae Grace says:

      Thanks for reading Andrew!

  2. cocomama81 says:

    Deep thought. Wonderful perspective

  3. ArtsyFemme says:

    Nice work. More people should take time in their day to reflect on that.They would probably bdless incompatible couples or broken ones coming together if they did .

    1. Jontae Grace says:

      Thanks for reading Femme! You’re right, we have to start evaluating compatibility more closely. And we have to do it from the inside out : )

  4. aidan says:

    Nice Publish. Its really a good article. We noticed your entire important points. Thanks

    1. Simply Amber says:

      Highly insightful, I love your opinion and I agree whole heartedly. I would be interested if you went more in depth about paying attention to yourself. And what would make you compatible with the other individual. I never once thought about the sleeping naked and what it potentially says about your character.

      1. Jontae Grace says:

        Thanks for reading Amber! And good news, the next Shadow Games article will be entirely about learning and knowing oneself : ) I truly appreciate your support : )

  5. Simply Amber says:

    I’ve been waiting for the rest of this article sir!!! I’m quite anxious to hear your opinions we don’t have enough men that are candidly honest. I am given life by most of your articles and it has inspired me to go back to writing poetry.

    1. Jontae Grace says:

      I’m writing it now Queen. Thank you so much for supporting my work! You have no idea how much it means to me. I will keep giving you the best that I am able to produce : )

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