Perception has been a lot more than what we have always thought of it as. It is not just any concept but it is a road to the journey called “LIFE”. It is a process to unfold “self knowledge”. It is an ability to see things differently.
Using outside as stimuli for your perception but the reality always comes from your inner self knowledge. Therefore, it is your inner self who perceive the outside in a certain ways.
Broadly talking, perception is not what our eyes, ears and other sensory experiences tells us; it is what our brain makes us see and hear and feel. Meaning how an individual’s own experiences, intensity of senses, cognition capabilities, childhood learnings truly affect the way one perceives the outside rationally making a huge difference in an individual’s life.
Let me Just try to explain how our mental health is actually being highly flown by our own perception and, how the perception can play a devil or an angel to our thoughts, feelings and behaviour. It is because perception is not a reality.
Perception is the way of regarding, under, or interpreting something; a mental impression.
Reality is a state of things that actually exist. Here, existence is absolute, self sufficient, or objective and not subject to individual’s decisions or conventions.
Perception is totally different from reality; yet it can become ones reality, as the perception has a potent influence on how we look at reality. Perception occurs totally in mind where it could be turn any belief into reality through mental gymnastics.
Think of it in a way that perception acts as a lens through which we view reality. Our perception influence how we focus on, process, remember, interpret, understand, synthesise, decide about, and act on reality. With this we believe in our perception of reality as an accurate representation of what reality truly is. But it is not. The thing is that the lens through which we perceive is often wrapped in the first place by past experiences, emotions, cognitive distortions, childhood learnings, prior knowledge, self interest.
However, if perception deviates too far from reality i.e. when it shits from mild illusion to delusion, it becomes a liability. (For eg: setting unattainable goals, no preparation for difficult tasks, planning consistently without actions). In fact, severe mental illnesses are reasons of substantial disconnection between perception and reality which leads people to not be able to function or perform any task.
The challenge is how to ensure that we keep our perception close to reality. Here are few tips to keep in mind -
- Never assume your perception as reality; just your reality.
- Respect others’ perceptions; they may be right.
- Never hold your perceptions too tight; they might be wrong.
- Recognise your distortions within you; that may wrap your perceptions.
- Seek out validation from experts; they might lessen the gap between your perception and reality.
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