I often view people as though they were characters in a book or a movie. Have you ever done that? It can really help you to enjoy people you might not enjoy otherwise. Because if someone is incredibley grumpy, for instance, and you're viewing them as a character—you can take a step back and appreciate the scene. I'm not saying you're necessarily going to look forward to time with this grumpy person (though I have looked forward to it before) but you will likely come to appreciate the grumpy person as an interesting character.
Many years ago I lived across the street from an elderly man who was often shirtless and always grumpy. Have you seen the movie "UP"? He was like that man minus the shirt. I enjoyed trying to befriend him though it never really worked. One evening, I'd just gotten back from an art class and I saw this grumpy man (I'll call him Mr. Blake). He had his back turned to me, pruning an already stumpy looking shrub at the edge of his yard. I called out across the street cheerfully, "Hi Mr. Blake! I just got back from an art class! Do you want to see what I made?" He turned his head only slightly and said, "No", which to this day, is so funny to me. Mr. Blake was a fantastic character! It would have been such a shame to miss out on that scene, and I'm thankful I got to be in it. Maybe when I moved away he looked out his window and muttered, "good riddance." I wish I'd heard him say it. It would've been worth needle pointing on a pillow.
Here’s another example, but of a totally different sort of character: This guy was helping me to my car with my groceries and he sneezed so loudly that I couldn't even believe it. It sounded like a combination of a throaty yell and a sneeze at the same time. I was astonished and it took all my power of self-control to keep from laughing in front of him. That sneeze made my day. I can't tell you how may times I've imitated it since. And he didn't seem to think anything of it—totally oblivious to his own explosive sneeze. What a character!
This week, be on the lookout for characters. I promise, they're out there.