Good morning beautiful W3,
I had the most wonderful time reminiscing with my son last night (he’s 22 years old now). It’s such a blessing to be able to get his perspective and his opinion on things … our past, our present, our future and at the same time … to not be obligated to take those opinions as my reality.
They are HIS reality.
To honor his thoughts, his feelings, his memories and to also honor my own … which may be different. And to be able to discuss all of that in a calm and healthy way is an incredible gift.
One thing I learned a long time ago, as I was being told that the experience I was describing wasn’t “real” (anyone else heard that EVER?) was that:
Your Perception IS Your Reality.
It can change … (your perception – and hence your reality), and if we really took the time to seek to understand another’s perception – without forcing our own reality onto them, some of our relationships might look and feel different.That can be a really difficult thing to do can’t it? We like to be “right”. I, myself, am a stickler for accuracy and so that can take me down a path that if I let it, could dismiss another’s experience and the emotions and thoughts, responses and reasons that are wrapped up in it.
Because no matter how you slice it, their experience IS their experience. YOUR experience IS your experience.
I don’t mean for that to sound vague or like bumper sticker psychology. But maybe, just maybe, when we are standing with someone and say – “Isn’t the grass a beautiful shade of green?” and they reply “The grass isn’t green … it’s red” …
That instead of arguing for “right” … insisting that OUR perception is THE reality … that instead we would seek to understand. And by doing so may find out that the perception of the grass being red is truly our friend’s reality … as color-blindness makes it so.
That is just one example of a mindset and behaviour pattern we can all practice. Where are you clashing with someone in your life over “accuracy”?
Where is your reality different than theirs and perhaps this is keeping you apart, disconnected, or in conflict.
What if you could say … “Hey Susie, I acknowledge that you feel this way – that your memory is different than mine – that your belief is not the same as mine – that your perception of the situation is one I don’t share …
AND that’s ok. I honor your experience as you see it.”
Done. Of course, you can spend more time “seeking to understand” – both for your Self and the person in question … and maybe there’s even room for “I’m sorry for anything I contributed that hurt you ….” and sometimes the best thing to do is to then let it be. Only you know for sure.
I’m sorry for anything I contributed that hurt you.
I can promise you this, had the person in my life said that to me … well, things could have gone very differently. So they are my go-to phrases to bridge a gap and calm a storm, and have been for years. And I mean them sincerely. (That’s an important part).