In previous articles I’ve written about how we all filter the world through our senses, so what we recall and therefore how we behave is determined by our beliefs, values, past experiences and the words we use, ie It’s like we’re all wearing sunglasses and everyone’s glasses are different.
As we have different glasses we will potentially each respond differently to a particular situation.
Everything we do, every decision we make has a purpose and that is to achieve something we value or want or which is of benefits to us.
Therefore, in any given situation you will make the best choice you can given your glasses, and with the resources available to you.
There will be a positive intention for you, even though others may not see it that way or may have made a different choice in the same situation. This works for all behaviours and decisions, for example think for a moment what the positive intention was behind choosing your last job, and also deciding what to have for lunch?
Intentions change over time;
we each do what we do because at some level it works for us or it or has worked in the past. Our intentions change over time, for example shouting may get a 5 year old what they want, but it doesn’t work so well at 40!
Starting with yourself, think about times in your past when your reaction or behaviour hasn’t got you the results you wanted;
• What was the positive intention behind that behaviour?
• How could you change your behaviour next time to get a more positive result? After all “If you do what you’ve always done, you’ll get what you always got”.
• Think about decisions you’ve taken, now can you understand that they were your best choices at the time, and can let go of any regrets that you’ve been holding on to?
Thinking of others
This is a belief of understanding and compassion. When someone acts in a way that seems negative to you, I’m sure you can now understand that they were making the best choice for them at the time and also that if they had different choices or more resources they would act more productively.
Think for a moment about someone’s behaviour that annoyed you recently or you didn’t understand. It could be a colleague who always takes the credit for your work, someone who pushed past you on the train or a friend who criticises you.
• What do you think was the other person’s positive intention?
• How could that behaviour have worked for them in the past?
• and now that you’ve considered these questions, how does that affect your feelings about them?
This belief doesn’t mean that you have to accept what they are doing, what it means is that you won’t be negatively affected by it. You can then help them to realize that there is a better way, and assist them to make more positive choices.
By changing your behaviour, you are effectively changing the filters on your sunglasses and adding more options to your map of the world.
Until next time