Perception: We All Have One

Before stepping on this path it never occurred to me that what I was seeing and hearing was being filtered through my own perception, I just took it all as fact, and reacted to it. What I didn’t realize is because I was living in a negative space, and quite often as a victim of the world and all of you, what I was seeing and hearing was skewed to fit the narrative I wanted to keep justifying. Often what was really going on was far from the way I had seen or heard it, making my reactions to it off and sometimes downright aggressive to the unsuspecting people I would encounter every day.

Perception is a tricky thing, even now sometimes I have to keep myself in check and ask myself if what I’m reacting to is really going on, or, is it just what I’m choosing to see and hear. Each of us has our own perception of the same things, and much of that perception is based on our past experiences, opinions, or whatever head space we may be in that day, and sometimes, it is whatever we’re wanting it to be based on expectations we had going in. Something to remember when we encounter people in our day to day life who may have a totally different perception than we do of that exact same event, and, just like with ourselves, we need to take into consideration that everyone else is fighting their own battles that we know nothing about, everyone, and in fighting those battles, is seeing things through their own filter, with their own perception. So, who’s right and who’s wrong? Well, it depends. It depends on who is taking in just the facts and who is lacing it with their own prejudices or preconceived notions of what was going to happen. It’s important to take stock of where we’re at and make sure we’re not bending the truth because of a bad mood, exhaustion, a case of being hangry, or maybe simply taking something out of context.

Misunderstanding someone’s meaning through email or text is really easy to do. It’s happened to me many times. We tend to read the words in whatever mood or head space we happen to be in, so a seemingly innocent message can come off angry if that’s the current mood we’re in, or if we’ve been harboring resentments against that person and haven’t worked on them and expressed how we feel. My recommendation always before immediately reacting is to pause, don’t do anything, maybe even go do something else for a while before getting back to it. Sometimes just taking a break does put things back in perspective and may help you read those same words differently. Something I also always do is ask myself if I can be misinterpreting the message, I question my perception because I know it can be off depending on what’s happening for me that day, sometimes just questioning myself can also put the words in perspective, as well as taking in the other person’s track record, do they typically talk to me like this, or does it seem out of character? Do some work before firing off a response and then hitting send. Trust me, you’ll make much less apologies when you practice this. Life is not a game show, we don’t get extra points for the fastest response, it never hurts to pause, and in some cases ask a friend for their opinion if you’re unsure yourself.

At the end of the day, we as individuals all see things differently, we all have our own opinions of the same events or information, we all bring our own history to every situation, the trick is to keep that into consideration before diving into an argument or engaging with someone you may have felt disrespected by, or offended by, ask yourself if that’s what’s really going on, and maybe ask someone else for their opinion. The idea is, we don’t just launch ourselves at someone without thinking it through, and reminding ourselves that someone else may be doing the same with us, so if you do feel attacked ask for clarification before lauding bombs back in their direction, communication is the key, and most of the time a simple clarification can fix things right up.

We are all human, we all make mistakes, remind yourself of that before becoming the judge and executioner in the course of a minute, what are the facts?

SLAY OF THE DAY: Are there times when you know your perception was off about a person or situation? Why do you think that was? What can you do in the future to keep your perception on track? Are you able to have compassion for others who’s perception may be off about you or a situation? If not why? Do you see how easy it is to be wrong about someone or something because of the where a place you may be in your life? How can you remedy that, or work on that for the future. SLAY on.

S – self L – love A – appreciate Y – you

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