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It takes all sorts to make the world

This proverb concerns differences of people’s personalities, so, I’m going to tell you first of all - about characters and appearances, then to speak about astrology and its influence on our life, and in conclusion about stereotypes, prejudices and phobias.

Every day we mix with hundreds of people – each of them has his own fate, life, goals, features, feelings, and emotions. There is no person who can be the same with anyone else – we all differ and most of all our difference is shown in our appearances, culture, but most of all – in our characters. Some people has a heart of gold, but we say about others: “she is as hard as nails”. It is obvious, that the best way to know a person – is to get to know more about him, to communicate with him, but of course, meeting people for the first time we always make a judgment based on their appearances.

It goes without saying, that appearances are deceptive. Practically everyone has met someone whose character and appearance differ radically. When one sees a tall broad-shouldered youth one expects him to be brave and strong-willed, but he can turn out to be petty and cowardly. At the same time a lot of great people were of a poor build and it didn’t stop them from displaying intelligence and courage. Ingenuity does not depend on the complexion or constitution. Plump or fat people create an impression of generous and kind personalities, but not rarely they may be thifty or even greedy. On the other hand, thin or slim ladies often tend to be lavish. That is why there is a famous proverb saying “All that glitters is not gold”. It is not always correct to make judgment about anyone only by its appearance as it's very easy to form a negative opinion about a person just because you don't like the way he looks, and it becomes like a barrier for further communication, though in fact he can be an interesting, well-educated and talented person with whom you have a lot of in common. So in every walk of life, one should always remember that outward appearances may not always be the truth. That's why now I try not to make any conclusions about a person when I meet him for the first time, it's better to stay neutral until the moment when you can say for sure that you know this person well.

It’s interesting that there are many people who declare that they don’t believe in Physiognomy, but even they are willing to give their impressions of one’s character based upon facial signs. So the proverb “the face is the index of mind” may prove useful if people tend to judge a person’s character from his facial features. There are many things indicative of character (f.e. full mouth suggests an open warm character, strength of bold people might be shown in jitting chin and many others).

As it’s known, there are 4 basic types of temperament and they have great impact on character of a person and his behavior. Sanguine type mostly looks on the bright side of things, is cheerful, confident, energetic and positive. A choleric temperament denotes a person hasty in all his or her actions, abounding with mental excitement, irritated and inclined to anger. A melancholic type indicates a body of slow growth but a mind of great activity. And phlegmatic people are mostly dull, indifferent and not easily excited into a passion.

In reference to astrology, as for me, I don’t really believe in horoscopes and all this stuff, but I think the reason why many people believe in astrology is that it offers a number of things which many people find very desirable: information about the future, advice on their current situation and future decisions. The signs of the Zodiac can give us great insights into our day to day living. You can discover a great deal of relevant information about yourself through reading about your Zodiac sign. I was born under the sign of Cancers, and according to astrologists most Cancers are a bundle of contradictions. Compassionate and caring with friends, family and lovers, yet they can cut to the bone with their jealous remarks and ever-changing moods. Frankly speaking, a bit of the information about me is true.

Besides all this, people’s estimations are also highly influenced by stereotypes and prejudices. Stereotypes are assumptions that people make about the characteristics of all members of a group, based on image of a few its representatives and a prejudice is a belief without knowledge of the facts. For example, Americans are generally considered to be friendly, tolerant but also impatient, while Asians, on the other hand, are expected to be reserved. Of course, not all Americans are friendly and generous and not all Asians are reserved. Many negative prejudices exist, (f.e that Jewish must be greedy). They can take many forms and lead to racism, sexism, gender and other discrimination.

If you have a stereotype, you don’t look at each person as an individual, you are likely to make errors in your estimations of his character. To my mind, the reason for why people have stereotypes is that judging others distracts from their own weaknesses and besides, we fear anything we don’t understand so stereotyping makes people feel more powerful and comfortable. The way to overcome them is through education and having an open mind to different people and cultures.

By the way, almost everyone has at least one irrational fear. It is called phobia – a persistent fear of certain situations, objects, activities or persons. Common phobias include closed-in places, heights, highway driving, flying insects, snakes, being needless or destitute. Most phobias develop in childhood, but they can also develop in adults. If you have a phobia, you probably realize that your fear is unreasonable, yet you still can’t control your feelings.

In conclusion, I shall say that the best way to define a person’s character is by observing his behavior and manners. Nature likes to play tricks on us and it makes our life a bright kaleidoscope of characters and appearances. The more bright and good-tempered people we have around us the happier we shall be. And we all need to work together to make this world a better place.

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