Therapy Spotlight-

Change your Perception: Change your Reality

 

By Barbara Barnes, BSN/RN-Retired,
MA/LMHC

 

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Have you ever had a “lightbulb moment”? A moment of sudden inspiration, revelation, or recognition? In those moments there is an ‘Ah–hah’. Suddenly we see things differently, with more clarity. Often, those moments offer us a chance to make a new decision, let go of something unwanted, and perhaps make a positive difference in our lives.

But, can we plan for ‘ah-hah’ moment or make an ‘ah-hah’ moment happen? Mostly, they seem to occur by chance, out of the blue. We say to ourselves: ‘Why didn’t I think of that before.’, or, ‘Geez, that is so obvious now.” 

There are a few things we can do to increase the possibility of perception change;

1. Decide to challenge the negativity bias of your brain. Because we form our perceptions have
by what we learned through our varied life experiences, we may have developed a restrictive

way of thinking. We may have conditioned ourselves to avoid situations and experiences and
information that challenge our perceptions. In doing so, we avoid the tension and fear of the

unknown and new. This allows us to feel safe, more secure. Staying curious and striving for an
open mind allows us to be better positioned for changes in our perception.

2. Look for patterns that happen again and again, taking you down a path you’d rather not follow. 
For example, if every time you change a job, end a relationship, or encounter an ending, you

find yourself slipping into a cycle of sadness and depression that seems all to familiar, perhaps you
are stuck looking at these situations from the wrong (or non-productive) angle. Instead of feeling abandoned or victimized, shift the angle and look for the common element. When there is an ending,

perhaps you are simply triggering an old subconscious pattern from long ago (childhood perhaps?) and
the ‘re-ignited chemical recipe’ of loss is let loose, resulting in that sadness and depression. This can reinforce itself and we get stuck.

3. Practice making decisions; For example here is an exercise you might find useful. Take some time
and think about your life, your days, your activities. How you think about these things, how you talk to others about yourself, is your story. But, what is the story you are living right now? Who wrote it? Was it you? Or are you living a story written by others, friends, spouses, employer, parents, school, the media?
Try sitting down right now, envision and write the next chapter of this story, and as you create a new reality in your mind, you are preparing for a shift of perception.

 By no means does having an open mind mean that we should throw out all of our current perceptions.
Many, maybe even most, are solid and serve us well, But periodically looking at our perceptions can

afford us more ways to consider, respond and react to life’s many situations. We can become more
resilient and effective as individuals, family members and citizens.

Perceptions, good and bad, shape our lives. Developing the discipline of challenging those
patterns can have a huge positive impact on your life.

From Methods of Emotional Awareness and Release Series 

 Barbara Barnes, BSN/RN-Retired, MA/LMHC, owner of Lotus Heart Therapy LLC, offers therapy, consultation, groups and workshops. For more information or to contact Barbara go to www.LotusHeartTherapy.com