Over time, I’ve found that expectations
–and who we are and where we came from–
color how we look at people.
It also can make for some
It never ceases to amaze me how we can become so wrapped up in our own world and points of view that we forget we’re sharing this planet with 7 billion other people. And because we’re always in our own head, operating from our own worldview and way of thinking, we also forget that our way of thinking isn’t the only way of thinking.
How many times were you sitting at a table with someone, or watching TV, or driving in the car, and the person you’re with says something and your first reaction is: “How the hell can you think that?”
Or, better yet, how about those times someone does something small, totally meaningless actually, that completely drives you nuts? To the point where you actually pick a fight over it?
I can tell you I have, and it’s something I work on every day (though not always successfully, but I try!).
Well, the other day I came across a little nugget of inspiration that stuck with me for those times someone else makes me react, and not positively.
Irked with someone?
Take a moment to look at the lens you’re looking through.
Is it cloudy? Clear it up. What do you see?
These are simple words, but powerful ones. Because when we get annoyed with someone, odds are we aren’t looking at them, or what happened, through clear eyes. Eyes that want to see. Instead, we get wrapped up in our own heads and what we think is right, forgetting that someone else has an opinion that’s just as meaningful as ours.
So this is what I do when that happens. I try to understand what kind of lens I’m viewing through, and often I discover it’s clouded by misconceptions and perceptions that don’t always fit. I’ve found that when I take the time to understand my own lens, that initial knee-jerk reaction (the one that isn’t necessarily good for the moment or the relationship) fades, leaving me with a clear view of who I’m with and how I’m really reacting. And then I can respond (or not) in a much better way than originally intended.
So what about you? Do you find your lenses get clouded over when you’re dealing with others? That you think your lens is the only lens to be looked through? And when that happens, what do you do?
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