There is a yoga instructor whose class I went to. She was young and had a lot of energy. She was very enthusiastic about the power yoga has to energize you and make you feel good about yourself. She would tell stories about how she had gotten into this profession and how it changed her life and how she had gone on a spiritual journey to India. Every time she spoke, I felt very uncomfortable. I didn’t want to get up and leave, but I couldn’t handle listening to her anymore so I eventually stopped going to her classes.
I later found out that this woman’s mother was dying at the time, but she never mentioned that in any of her classes. She seemed so happy-go-lucky all the time, and this really bothered me. My perception of her was based on my imagination of what her life must be like outside of the class, which created an impression of her that wasn’t real. My reaction to that perception was coming from my own self-centric nature and although it seemed as if my reaction were about her, it was really about me.
In a world full of people with their own issues, it’s hard to have a positive effect on all the people you meet. It’s not possible to change them so don’t even try. It will only give you a false sense of hope that only leads to disappointment.
Instead, work on yourself and your perception of others. Your perception of others is a reflection of yourself. You are responsible for your reaction to what happened at the moment, no one else. It’s very easy to place blame but that doesn’t change anything. The power is in your hands because you have control over how you perceive others and react.
People’s perception of you and the way you are treated is a reflection of your character. Your reaction to them is an awareness of yourself. When conflict arises and people walk away, they don’t return with their fists; they return with their true selves.
Their true self is their real perception of you, which you may not like, but it is only temporary. Some people believe that if someone doesn’t agree with them then it is because the other person is ignorant or disrespectful. That is not always the case; sometimes it is just a difference in perspective.
People will treat you how they perceive you because they don’t know who you truly are. They will treat you how they were taught to treat others. If they were taught to be confrontational and insensitive, then they will be confrontational and insensitive towards you.
You can’t blame someone for how they were raised or taught as a child because that was out of their control and was done without malice or ill-will. You can only blame yourself for how others perceive you because that is something that is within your control and out of another’s control
- Our natural reaction to people is a projection of ourselves
The most basic way to get along with people is to understand that our natural reaction to people is a projection of ourselves. In other words, we tend to think that if we were in someone else’s position, we’d do what they did. This is often true.
We have a deep-seated need for order and predictability in our lives. We crave the feeling of control over the things around us, so society has developed rules about what is acceptable behavior. If everyone else is stopping at red lights, we feel more secure about crossing the street if we stop, too. These rules help us adapt to our environment and keep us from getting into trouble.
One downside of having a predictable world is that we’re not as open to new experiences or opportunities as we could be. Our tendency to project ourselves onto others keeps us from seeing the world with fresh eyes, which limits how much we grow as individuals.
Dealing with people effectively means recognizing this tendency in ourselves and learning to challenge it when necessary. We want others to recognize our perspective and give us what we want because it’s reasonable and makes sense – not because it’s what they would do in our shoes.
- Others’ first impressions of us are based on our body language and the way we speak
You might have heard the old saying, “Don’t judge a book by its cover.” What you may not have realized is that your own success in life could be tied to how you dress.
The clothes you wear can affect the way people perceive you. The way you speak, walk, and gesture can affect the way people react to you and how they perceive your intelligence levels. But it’s not all about the clothes and what they say about you, but rather how you carry yourself that makes a big difference in how others see you.
The truth is that how people perceive us based on our body language and voice tone is largely influenced by our culture. However, we cannot deny that these things do make a difference in how we are perceived.
We live in a very diverse world today where cultures and societies celebrate different attributes of their people. One culture may value intelligence over everything else, while another might focus on physical strength or personality traits.
It’s important to understand that no matter where we come from or what we might value as an individual, there are some things that just don’t fly around the world when it comes to speaking with others. The last thing you want to do is insult someone or make them feel uncomfortable through your body language or voice tone.
- How you feel about me, is a reflection of you
How you feel about me, is a reflection of you. In other words, your negative judgment of me is actually a reflection of what you don’t like about yourself. It’s not a reflection of me, it’s a reflection of you.
The reason why I say this today is because I’m interested in how you perceive me and how it affects how you feel about yourself. If you think that I’m arrogant or full of myself or egotistical, what does that say about you?
If I make jokes about my own imperfections and if I’m self-deprecating in my humor, what does that say about your sense of humor?
If I accept myself as I am and then allow others to accept themselves as they are, what does that say about your ability to forgive others or to love others? I’m not saying that you’re judging me at all.
What I’m saying is simply this: when you judge me in any way, shape, or form — whether it’s good or bad — it’s really not good for you. Because it’s really not going to bring out the best in yourself.
Self-awareness is essential to recognizing where others get their impression of you and how they react to you
Understanding how people perceive you can be a huge asset in business, whether it’s something as simple as being aware of how your body language impacts others or knowing how to adjust your behavior to better interact with different types of people.
Trying to change someone’s perception of you requires one thing: understanding what they think of you. By knowing their thoughts and opinions, you can work toward changing them.
People form first impressions of other people almost instantly. It happens in a flash, and the first impression is often not far off the mark. The problem is that most people don’t realize they’re forming an opinion at all. The human mind does this on autopilot, so it’s not a deliberate process.
If you can catch yourself forming an opinion about someone else, then you can take control of that process and start to edit any negative perceptions before they become a problem in your personal or professional life.
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