People’s contradictions more often than not mask their ideals. What they yearn to be but couldn’t.
Look for what is being masked. When an ideal it’s realized people will engage in all kinds of behavior to suppress their desires.
But like embers from a fire that refuses to die from time to time you will feel the sparks of their ideal. An ideal can be anything from ‘people don’t take me seriously’ to ‘I could have been a contender’. Sorry couldn’t resist there.