Perception is as unique as the person who carries it. Our entire belief system is an entanglement of infinite perceptions. It’s a complex translation of thought patterns that guide us through life. I could go on and on about perception but it would most likely bore the shit out of you. Instead, I’m going to discuss the importance of acknowledging conflicting perceptions without getting stuck on who’s right and who’s wrong.
We think differently, therefore we perceive differently. Perceptions offer a platform for opposing perspectives. And I have often found my perspective going head to head with that of my daughter.
No two brains function the same and she processes things at a different rate than I do. Since she was a little girl she would describe an event completely differently than I saw it. This caused friction because in my perspective she wasn’t being truthful. And the more I tried to explain my truth the more she argued her own. I would accuse her of being dramatic or exaggerating, and she would become defensive and shut down. The difference in perspectives caused our relationship to suffer.
I’m about to become philosophical; translation, B-O-R-ing. But bear with me. Perception is never about reality. It’s a reflection of our beliefs. To change someone’s belief, we would have to change their perception, right? When my daughter holds a belief about me or an incident I feel is untrue, I challenge her perception and attempt to show her why it’s inaccurate. But that rarely works. Because her perception is hers and who the hell am I to tell her it’s wrong?? Let’s face it, to a teenager, Moms know absolutely nothing anyway.
If I want to keep the peace the only thing I can do is change my perspective about her belief. I need to respect her difference in opinion and allow her to come to her own conclusions. It doesn’t mean I agree with her. But it does validate her thought process; and as humans we require validation.
We often look for ways to change others. But if we could respect differences of opinions and beliefs without having to agree with them, we would be a little more content and a little less judgy. Instead of judging the way others perceive the world, perhaps we should evaluate our own reflections. Because if we don’t like what we see, it’s time to change our perception. It’s really that simple.