Perception - Another Person's Reality

To really understand another person you need to understand how your filtering mechanism works.

Your filtering mechanism is your belief system of what you see or another word for that is paradigm. A paradigm is the belief that has been turned into a habit and has been programmed into you. it is how you perceive reality and why you act the way you do and live the way you do.

A paradigm is like railroad tracks. It creates a set direction for how you see the world. Everything you see, everything you’d do everything you perceive of other people and situations, is filtered through your paradigm. It becomes your reality.

So it is also with other people. Their paradigm or belief system filters the information that they take in.

In order to understand how another person perceives reality, you have to understand how they grew up, their culture. You have to understand their personality, and you have to understand their current situation. 

Civility?

Name calling! Finger-pointing! Backbiting!

Blaming others seems to be the norm these days. Should it be?

Tear down this wall!

Years ago, East and West Germany became one nation. A wall was torn down. It is time our walls between differing ideologies, values and opinions come down.

Effective leaders cultivate a safe and supportive climate in which relationships are based on inclusivity, trust, and mutual respect. Only in a supportive environment can people feel safe to express differences of opinions and work toward “win-win” solutions.

This country and so many communities, groups, and political organizations need to listen to each other. Not just not talk and take positions, but to listen to why people hold a particular view. The environment we create teaches generations of individuals how to think about, talk about, talk to, and treat one another.

Listening is an action!

Listening is a skill that requires intentional development. Just as you needed to learn how to walk correctly, relationships require the skill to actively listen because much of the time when an issue arises, the problem on the surface usually has a problem behind it where the true issue lies.

We each view life and the issues we encounter through our own filters. Unique opinions and values form through our environment: the people we grew up with. Live and work around. Our experiences, thoughts, and perceptions about them. The values we have formed throughout our lives. We create environments everywhere. Family. Friends. Work. Worship. The grocery store. The car. Play.

Inherent in every relationship, conflict is a difference in perspectives. The diversity of perspectives within relationships helps generate ideas and facilitate change. If it is managed wisely, conflict is an opportunity. Listen for values to identify the issue.

Don't just talk about an issue, talk through it

The search for common ground on tough issues is more productive using a technique called "deliberative dialogue," seeking "why" people hold their position. Dialogue talks through an issue, not just takes a stand about - for or against - an issue. When you seek to understand the "why" others act the way they do, you discover a person's values. From there, you can work together to identify a positive outcome in a safe space. People can come together, talk through perspectives on issues, and find common ground that will create a better environment.

Consider these questions when identifying the "problem behind the problem." Be sure to intentionally involve all affected parties in the dialogue.

Naming the issue: What do you think is the problem? What bothers you?

Framing the issue: What can/should we do about the problem?

Deliberating to understand values: If we do what you suggest, what do you think would happen?

What would be fair? Effective?

Why would we be better off? How would we be better off?

What is the downside?

If there is a downside, would we change our minds? What different course could we pursue?

Acting together to find common ground: What would you and the affected parties be willing to do about the problem? What are you willing to give up to do what you want to do?

Are you seeking civility? Check your environment. See if people listen to and respect one another. If you need a technique, try deliberative dialogue.

"The Be WUCA! Way" teaches civility.

Learn - Do - Teach.

The Story of the 18th Camel

The story is told of a Middle Eastern traveler making his way on a long journey across the desert. As he plodded on his camel steadily through the dry heat, he came upon an oasis. Approaching the desert spring, the traveler was surprised to find three brothers weeping profusely.

Through conversation with the mourning brothers, the traveler discovered their father had recently passed away. The source of the tears was the brother’s inability to satisfy their fathers’ last wish.

The father had given strict instructions that the inheritance of his estate be divided in such a way that the oldest received one half, the second received one third, and the youngest received one ninth of the father’s estate.

The brothers had successfully divided the rest of their father’s property, but were unable to do so with the camels. The father had left them 17 camels, and, try as they may, the brothers could not distribute the camels according to father’s wishes.

The traveler considered the dilemma and then offered the brothers a solution. He insisted they receive his camel as a gift. After much conversation and many attempts at refusal, the brothers relented to the travelers’ demands and received the kindness of his gift.

With 18 camels, the brothers were able to properly divide the inheritance and satisfy their father’s wishes. The older brother received one half of the herd and took his 9 camels. The second brother received one third of the herd and took his 6 camels. The youngest brother received one ninth of the herd and took his 2 camels.

Surprisingly, 9 camels plus 6 camels plus 2 camels equals 17 camels. With the inheritance properly distributed, the traveler was able to take his camel and continue on his journey.

What solution do you have to offer to the desperate situations around you? Many times the answer is not either/or but the answer lies in the third option, an option that you never would have found if you did not try and understand another’s point of view. The solution might be right in front of you but you are to close to see it.

Are you riding on the 18th camel?