I am going through an amazing and powerful self-discovery journey through a training called Gratitude Training. Someone in my group sent me this image today and completely shifted me and set a new tone for my day!
How often do we avoid “being blamed” or “looking bad” or “being right” about a number of things? My truth (and I say “my” truth because there is no ultimate truth, even though we like to believe there is) is that we tend to interpret everything that happens in our lives all the time. Our reactions are a direct result of those interpretations. And overall, we see results from the entire process! Something like this:
I’m sure you’ve heard people say that an event (or person) directly caused them to feel something or forced to behave in a certain way. But take a second to examine what are the things you are saying about that event. Let’s say that you and I are both sitting in a room full of people, and a stranger barges through the door and scream, “I AM THE KING OF THE WORLD!!!” (and no, this man is not Jack from Titanic… but if it makes you happy to picture it that way, go for it!) I might interpret his action as being rude and interrupting, you might interpret him as having immense passion and joy, someone else might see him as been attention-seeking, and so on. The same event had an entire group of people make completely different interpretations, and therefore, completely different reactions. Now let’s look at the results that come from those interpretations. My results might be that I’ll be in a bad mood for the rest of the day and I might even get into arguments with my loved ones. Your results might be that you are inspired by him and make decisions so as to reflect passion and joy. Someone else’s results might be that they shut themselves off to other people for the rest of the day. Different results based on the reactions and interpretations we made. However, we all get to evaluate the results we are seeing. Is that something I want for my life? Yes? Great! No? Let’s re-interpret events and see how that shift in perspective impacts my life. And we can do that with everything we come across.
Now to connect this idea with the metaphor of the dogs. If I can re-interpret everything that happens to me AND I am a reflection of everything in the world, the possibilities are infinite. I can tell myself that I am an immensely powerful and charismatic person and interact with the world from that place. Isn’t that much different than telling myself that “there’s nothing I can do, the world will always be the same, nothing will ever change”? Or on a smaller scale…. if you tell yourself, “I am selfish, it’s just who I am,” what kind of effect is that having in your personal relationships. What if you shifted that self-interpretation to “I am giving and caring…” what kind of changed would you see in your relationships? Including the one with yourself….
I also invite you to spend the next 24 hours seeing everything that happens in your life as being neutral, rather than being good/bad, right/wrong, fair/unfair. Think about the messages you are telling yourself about yourself and the world, and seeing how they are directly impacting everything and everyone around you. Also, consider what it would take for you to shift. How will you make that shift happen?
Re-interpret your interpretations!