Everyone views the world through the lens of their own reality. In a sense, we all live in a different universe. Though we may be experiencing the same events, the way we interpret the event may be different. When we are depressed, anxious or grieving, we have a tendency to forget that things will get better. When all you can see is darkness, you forget that the other side of darkness is light.
For example, you might feel rejected by a job, family, society or someone you love. One person might see the rejection as an opportunity to learn and grow, to find another solution to what they want. And another person might see the rejection as proof that they are a failure. Everyone fails sometimes. What counts is how you react to the failure or rejection.
When we are grieving, depressed or anxious, we can’t understand how we will move past our intense emotions. We can’t understand how other people can be so happy when we are suffering so. Each feeling that we have gives us information. Grief teaches us to appreciate the ones that we love, depression lets us know that something is out of balance, and anxiety tells us that we do not feel safe. We can use these emotions to become introspective and more aware of who we are. Here are some points to perception and how it can hurt or heal us:
1. We are a product of our genes and environment: When we fail to understand that other people see the world differently than us, miscommunication and tension develop. We can have healthier and happier relationships in business and in our personal lives if we take the time to listen to someone else’s perception without judgement.
2. Focus on abundance and not lack: Sometimes we get stuck in the negative cycle of longing for what we don’t have. This might make us anxious or depressed. If we focus on what we do have, we become calmer and more focused. Appreciation and gratitude is an easy trick to be a happier person.
3. Take criticism with a grain of salt: Sometimes people criticise us in a way that helps us to grow and develop. This sort of criticism is coming from a place of care and love. Destructive criticism comes from a place of jealousy or judgement and should be filtered out. Do not internalise other people’s negativity towards you as it tends to be a projection of how they feel about themselves.
4. Be patient with yourself: Sometimes we might feel annoyed with ourselves because we think that our emotions are a sign of weakness. This is not helpful. When you feel down, give yourself some space. Space to respect and grow from your emotions, and space from self-judgement and criticism.
5. Know yourself: Understand your emotions and what triggers them. Knowing yourself helps you to avoid conflict and understand what you need to meet your goals.
6. Social support: Spend time with people who offer emotional support and support your growth as a person. Stay away from people who are motivated by jealousy and anger.
7. Reach out to a professional: If you feel unmotivated, and can’t find joy in anything, it is a good idea to ask for help from an expert. A professional can help you to understand yourself better and reach your full potential.
Dr Monica Borschel is a US-trained Clinical Psychologist
Reach out to Dr Borschel: firstname.lastname@example.org for a private or skype session