Often times we base our conclusion on a one-sided story. I’m not a saint. I, myself is guilty of that. I had once sided a friend who narrated her story to me first. I concluded based on what she told me and decided to take action on it. However, when I spoke with the other person she had the issue with, I discovered that my friend was wrong too. Hearing both sides I was able to resolve the issue and settle the matter amicably.
Most times, we are guilty of these hasty conclusions. Like the Biblical Portipha’s wife, humans narrate a story from the angle that suits them. While telling it to others, we acquit ourselves of all wrongdoings and fault, heaping it on the other person who most times will not be present to speak up.
People are deceitful. They always want to be the best. Come to religion, we all want to be others’ favorites. In politics, everyone wants to be the best choice. In life in general, no one wants to be at the end of the ladder, we all want to be at the top.
To be all these, people resort to scandals, defamation of other people’s character, falsehood and badmouthing are like flies. You are the Saints; the unavailable party is the devil. You are the angel; the other is a devil incarnate.
In today’s world, packaged truths are trends. There are a lot of false stories flying in the air. Many do not care about others anymore. They do whatever they have to do to climb up the corridors of power and fame including painting others black. Others will not hesitate to do whatever they can to pull others down and drag their names in the mud. With the aid of social media, this has become easier.
You, the listener will base your conclusions on this. Sometimes we take actions which could have negative results on the other person without hearing from him, this is totally unfair. Even the court of Law does not make decisions except they hear from the two sides (there are exceptions, however).
The Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria in its section 36 provided for the human and individual right to a fair hearing. No person shall be found guilty or condemned without availing him/her the opportunity to defend him/herself against the charges leveled against him/her.
Every one of us is like a court of law. Courts do not draw conclusions on rumors and one-sided stories. Why then do we sit down on our imaginary high throne and condemn others without hearing their own sides?
Some even go as far as bearing grudges and keeping malice against the person whom another complained against. Others condemn the person in their heart and refuse to offer help to him/her when necessary. More than ever, we need discernment.
Justice obviously has been thrown to the winds, discarded and abandoned. While we blame our system and our court of laws for their inefficiency and failures, don’t be an unjust Judge in your little corner of life. There are two sides to a story (sometimes more, depending on the number of parties involved), hear all before jumping into silly conclusions. Do not fall for every line you see. Not everything you hear about your neighbor is true. Be careful, else you might hang that innocent person.
However, if you can, approach the other person if need be. Nothing beats you getting your facts right before you speak. Be polite, be calm, and allow him or her to tell his part of the story. Concluding on a one-sided story can be dangerous. Listen with an open mind even if the first party is your friend. Don’t be hasty to make conclusions. Sometimes objects in the mirror are not as they seem.
Are you a leader in your sphere of life? Don’t believe everything you hear about your subordinates. Hear their sides of the story. Someone might have cooked the one-sided story to destroy your relationship with your juniors. Did you hear or read stories about a close friend from a tabloid? Don’t conclude on that, approach the person and ask questions. Trust me, it won’t hurt you.
Of course, some people may lie. But any decision you take will be fair. Like a coin, they are two sides to a story. You cannot know what is on the other side by looking at one side of it. Don’t deliver your Judgment without seeing both sides. When you hear both sides, point out to the parties where they are wrong notwithstanding that one may be your friend. Let’s be fair Judges. A one-sided story has its own two sides too, a mini-truth and a mini-lie.
Remember, none of us is leaving here alive!