Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Our Perception Makes Our Reality

Our sense of time passing is an illusion, determined largely by how quickly our brain processes what's happening around us. Color is another thing determined by our brain, each specific shade determined by the way our brain interprets information received from the cones in our eyes. Our taste buds actually do relatively little to tell us about the food we eat – instead, our brain takes the information received by our nose, adds in backup data from our tongue, and cooks up an entirely new sense known as taste.

Most of what we perceive as reality, in fact, happens inside our head. Even when other parts of our bodies are what's actually receiving the data, it's useless to us until our brain translates it into something we understand. And, unlike computers,  each set of neurons and stem cells is even more unique than our fingerprints. It's more than a cliché that no two people see the world in exactly the same way – it's scientific fact. And, when you're human, how you see the world determines how your world actually is.

That's even more true when it comes to less tangible things. If brain waves determine color, taste and even time itself, then they're definitely in the driver's seat when it comes to things like beauty, goodness and wonder. That's why everyone's taste is different – what one set of neurons sees a beautiful may not be what another set of neurons sees as beautiful. So if someone doesn't find you attractive, that's says nothing about how you look. It just means that their way of perceiving the world simply wasn't compatible.

It can't change the data of your life – horrible events will happen, no matter what our attitude is – but it can change how you translate that data. It's the inside of your head that tells you whether to focus on the good things or the bad things in your life, or if a particular challenge is something you're capable of overcoming.  You don't get to decide what happens to you, but you do get to decide what it all actually means.

It also determines how we see ourselves. Your perception of your own attractiveness has an effect on how attractive you actually are to people, because it changes how you carry yourself and the confidence you project when you interact with others. If you see yourself as brave, you won't get intimidated by challenges that come your way. You will, in fact, will yourself into bravery.

If you see yourself as stupid, you'll get easily frustrated by tasks and give up on things you decide are "too hard." If you see yourself as smart, on the other hand, you'll set yourself to the challenge of problem solving because you know you're intelligent enough to succeed. You'll be more likely to solve the problem simply because you were willing to use all of your energy and intelligence to tackle it. Your IQ and skill sets don't change, but the results do.

We can help program our brains, shifting our perceptions inch by careful inch. It's not easy, and sometimes you need help in order to make it happen, but you can literally change your life by adjusting your mind.

There's an entire world being built inside your head. Make sure it's the one you want to be living in.

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