Dealing With People You Dislike

articles lifestyle Oct 11, 2020

Written By Joe G. Santos

There is no doubt that life is a beautiful thing. Every day, we are graced with experiencing the gift of existence, and through our individual spiritual journeys, we learn to be more discerning of all the blessings presented to us by the Universe. 

Yet, a common pitfall we experience through our sojourn through life is expecting all of these blessings to only come in the ways that feel good to us. Sometimes we forget that blessings come in the form of harsh lessons, the loss of something dear, the stress of everything's overwhelming constant motion, or even through a "nemesis."

As much as the word "nemesis" today is associated with an enemy or an oppositional force, Greek Mythology equates Nemesis with a goddess. Nemesis can be thought of as the goddess of Karma, Balance, or Retribution. Instead of oppositional, think of her as the embodiment of cause and effect. Although her lessons many times (if not most) come in the form of punishment for the wrongdoings of humanity, the fear of retribution here should not really be the focus of her teachings. In mythology, Nemesis appeared to those of grand arrogance. The most famous story she appears in, the tale of Narcissus, who, with his colossal vanity and guidance from Nemesis, finds a puddle and sees his own reflection in it. Upon seeing his reflection, he falls madly in love with the sight of his own gaze and never leaves that site for all of eternity.

Similar to Narcissus, sometimes, our own arrogance can lead life to present us to our Nemesis. She can be made reincarnate in the form of a person you cannot stand or a person who cannot stand you. Either way, that individual is only a reflection of something within you. Blaming the Nemesis for our own distress leaves us at the puddle like Narcissus, eternally looking at the cause of our hardship, but never moving away. But that being said, how do we overcome that? How do we step away from the reflection to return to a state of harmony and flow?

Understand What You Dislike

Our aversion to somebody can many times be left unjustified, especially in our hyper-modern world where distancing yourself from somebody lies a block or an unfriend button away. The issue with that is that through simply distancing yourself you are not learning anything from the interaction. A good way to understand what got you in that situation in the first place is by asking yourself a few questions and finding the specifics of the nature of that karmic interaction.

What has that person done to upset you?

The catalyst for anything is always an action. Can you pinpoint anything specific that the person does that leaves a sour taste in your mouth? We can get upset frequently over something minor. By analyzing what action has triggered your loathing, you can look at it more objectively and sense if the source of it is really what the person has done, or if you are simply not living to the tune of a higher vibration at that moment. If that's the case, look deeper. That minor annoyance could bring you to find the real reason you are upset, leading to steps away from it in the future. If anyone has been abusive towards you (either verbally or physically), you are more than allowed to step away from that relationship.

In that scenario, before you do any deep diving into your conscious and/or subconscious in the search for a reason, "why?", you have to take care of yourself first.

Does that person remind you of yourself?

As we know, we are all unified, and separation is but a convincing illusion. So, it is to no surprise that even the person you want the most distance from would have something in common with you. Could it be that you don't like them because they remind you of an aspect of yourself you haven't learned to love yet? This question can be tough to answer, but meditation can grant transparency. Take some time to think deeper on that, and you might find that the Universe is teaching you how to love yourself more.

Do you think you are better than them?

Now, this is one that many of us can become a victim. We put forth our best effort daily to be the best person we can be. We meditate, exercise, eat healthily, stay informed, etc. It's a lot of hard work striving towards enlightenment and personal perfection. Even when we know it benefits us in the long run, that work can leave us tired and overwhelmed, and it is very easy to feel discouraged when you think somebody is not putting as much effort into their practice. At times like these, it's important to remember that we are all doing our best daily to be the best person we can be. It's imperative to not think of your standards of "best" as universal. Sometimes what you're doing might be a little out of reach of somebody's effort (or even not useful to them at all), and that's okay. Instead of being annoyed by what somebody isn't doing, find a way to help. Yet, it's crucial to note that direct criticism is not always the best way to help somebody, and it can lead to more disarray than harmony.

Remember to ask what somebody needs help with before jumping in and attempting to "save" them. Some people may not feel like they need your help, and that is fine. Even if they seem completely lost, the help will appear when they are ready, or they might even come to ask you for help later.

Do you think they're better than you?

As we are all aware, our egos can be very fragile, and that frailty can lead to a lot of jealousy. By focusing on what we lack, we can become unwilling to invite people who have what we do not into our lives. Hopefully, if that is the case, through reflection on this question, we can come to realize that this is a mistake. Often by being more inviting to people who possess what we do not, we can learn how to get to the places we want through knowledge exchange. Pushing these people away only furthers the distance between you and what you desire. We must be cautious not to act out of envy, depriving ourselves of valuable connections and/or alliances.

Moving Forward

Now, these questions are only the beginning of what sort of personal interrogation you can do to find clarity. Depending on the situation, other questions will arise. Take your time with them and answer them critically. Unless it is a person who causes you undue suffering, be mindful before cutting ties or acting out of hate. Remember, Nemesis appears to teach you a lesson, not to bring you unnecessary hardship, and if you find yourself in Narcissus's role right now, life is more than just the puddle. Learn, get up, and go.

About the author: Joe G. Santos
Writer, Thinker and Visionary. Through writing, I aim to clarify the most pressing questions about human behaviour and world issues, pointing to practical resolutions in an entertaining and accessible manner. You can find my work and contact me at

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