If you’re a dreamer, chances are you idealize people. It’s wired in our natures. We live in a world of imagination and fantasy, and we can’t help but superimpose our glorious visions of perfection upon those around us.
This can sometimes cloud our judgment to an unhealthy extent. It’s a good thing to see the silver lining threaded through the soul of every human being, but we have to understand that not everyone is a marble statue of wonder. Often, upon closer inspection, we find cracks feathering through the structure of our idols, and the weathering of age upon their visages.
But disillusionment is not the only ramification of idealizing people. Idealizing is a veneer of pretty glitter. It distorts your vision. You see a goddess instead of a woman. You see a superhero rather than a man. And by doing so, you prevent yourself from truly getting to know other human beings.
I recall idealizing a boy in primary school to such an extent that I could not even speak to him, for fear of shattering the illusion. I had also blown out of proportion his good qualities, and made myself feel astronomically inferior. I regret that. Maybe I could have got to know a really friendly guy, but my fantasy-loving brain got carried away, and left me with only an fragmented illusion.
So, what can you do to fix this?
It’s hard to rewire our thoughts, especially since we live in a society where celebrity worship is, well, celebrated. People faint upon meeting their favourite actresses or getting their book signed from a famous author. This societal glorification, a large-scale projection of idealization, almost seems to tell us that human worship is okay.
Sure, you can love people for their public image and their work. But what you have to realise is that everyone is human. I mean it. Human. Raw. Sometimes ugly, sometimes beautiful.
The only way to stop idealizing the people you currently worship is to talk to them and get to know them. However, if the wall of illusion is already built, and you can’t stand tearing it down, you can prevent it happening in the future by changing your mindset.
By keeping in touch with your inner humanity. Now, this doesn’t mean feeling compassion for the creatures of this world – you have enough of that. It means seeing humans for what they truly are. They are not deities. They are just like you. No, seriously. Think about it. They are just like you. Sure, give or take some differences in terms of talent, money and looks, but, in the end, they’re human. We all cry. We all eat. We all hate. We all love. We are united by our common humanity. We all have horrible I-want-to-die days and blissful life-might-be-okay-after-all days. Yes. Everyone. That cute girl that sits behind you in class. Your favourite pop star. The president.
All I’m saying is, dear dreamers, that we’ve got to be careful and not create a land of jewel-soul beings of unparalleled perfection in which we’re the only sand-bag rag doll. It’s no good for forming true relationships, and no good for you, either, because you’ll just get up feeling terribly inferior.
And, hey, if you’re really struggling with pulling away the veil of moonbeams, just imagine the object of your idealization sitting on the toilet and pooping. And maybe not even with grace. Just the way you do it, slouched down on the toilet seat, playing on your phone. It’s a bit unsightly, but it works. That’s a sure fire way to drag the cloud down to earth.
But in all other respects of your life…