Whenever I want to change how I feel about someone, I use a very simple trick:
I look at the person and imagine what they looked like as a child.
You'll be amazed how differently they suddenly appear to you - and how differently you feel towards them.
You'll see that they were a child once, too. You'll see how sweet and innocent they were once, too. You'll see they had huge hopes and dreams once, too - before they were wounded and disappointed by the world.
Here's the thing, though. This isn't a trick. It's reality.
Within everyone is a sweet little kid who deeply desires to be loved, valued, and heard. We may look like adults, but most of us are just little kids running around in big bodies.
So, in this time of pain and fear and frustration with our fellow human beings, give this a try. Imagine what the adults around you looked like as little kids. Look at your significant other, your co-workers, your boss, politicians on TV, strangers on the street, your enemies, and every adult this way. See what happens.
Not only can it help soften your regard for them - it can also help soften your regard for yourself.
(Photos by Sheldon Levy)