What You See Is Your Perception
Posted by terrepruitt on January 17, 2015
Perception. Such an odd thing. I remember when I was 15 years old and working in an office with some young women. They were probably in their 20s so really still young. I remember all the stories they would tell me and how they would carry on like 20-somethings do. Then one day a child walked in and the woman I knew to be a young person who enjoyed to go out and have a good time became a mom. It was the weirdest thing. I am not saying this woman was a party animal, but it was just odd to see this woman go from working woman to working mom. Since she didn’t really talk about her kid all that much it was easy to forget that she was a mom. I am not saying she didn’t talk about her kid because she didn’t love her child or because she didn’t care. She talked to me more about things that a 15 year old is involved in or going through; relationships, school, and being young . . . . not kids. The group conversations in the office tended to be around other things since not everyone had kids. Also, there was seeing a tough boss lady with her spouse. Seeing the loving side of a meany. Seeing different sides. I didn’t know the woman as a mother, so it was odd to see her acting like one. I didn’t know the gruff boss lady as a wife so it was odd to see her act like one. Friends also might have different perceptions than family members because they’ve seen different things and experienced different things. Also new friends and old friends. Sometimes people modify their behaviors, mature, or just change so people who are just meeting someone for the first time might not have any idea of how it used to be. So the perception of the person is different for the new person than for the person that has been around. What you know to be true from your experience, can be different from what someone else knows because they have had different experiences.
So amazing how that is. It is amazing how everyone’s perception can be different. Our perception has a lot to do with ourselves. Someone who has been cheated on by a significant other might take “I’m working late,” completely different from someone who has never had that mistrust thrust upon them.
This is all just talking about people. What about “things”? Like viewing clouds or art. Two people look up in the sky, one person sees a dinosaur and the other a horse. And even if both people were to look up and see a horse it would probably still be different types of horses. As I was contemplating the “people” aspect it occurred to me that recently I had been thinking about perception in regards to Nia. I always say it is a practice like yoga, and for those people who think of yoga as a religion, I am wondering now if they think I mean that Nia is a religion. A recent conversation made me think so. Even though I was hoping I was explaining it well when I say that you can take some of the ideals and principles of Nia out into the world just like you do with yoga. I guess that could sound like a religion – especially if you think of yoga as a religion. Yoga being a religion is also a funny thing, because some people say it is and some people say it isn’t. I was hoping to get a regular Nia class going at a yoga studio a long time ago and I said something about “some people believe it is a religion” to the owner of the studio, she got very upset saying that was not true. Well, it is VERY true some people DO think it is a religion. I never got a class there.
I think of Nia as an exercise program with a holistic twist. Just like yoga. But yoga can be taken to the point of being a religion, but not everyone that does yoga considers it a religion. I actually don’t know anyone that teaches Nia who considers it a religion. But the more I think about it, the more I can see how some people could think of it that way. Perhaps comparable somehow to the people who have been cheated on. If they think of everything as being in competition with their own religion maybe anything outside of it that you practice would be considered a religion to them. I don’t know . . . that is one of the things I have been thinking about when thinking about how people see things. Perception is weird. The ol’ “glass half full, glass half empty” thing.
Do you ever experience the differences in perception? With people you know that your friends know? With co-workers? With family? How do you experience it?