Perception Creates Your Reality-Change How You Feel About People With This Relationship Skill


 No one ever goes home and says, I can't believe it. I didn't trip into my pants today. Or I had the best day ever. No one crashed their car into me; it is our nature to discount the day-to-day good things that are happening, and only to notice the bad. 

Now, this may be natural but it's also poisonous for relationships. In order to love we need to choose where we put our attention. If you look for the bad in your friends, your boss, or your husband, you will find it. If you look for the good you will find it. You can create your relationship reality by what you choose to see. 

So let me tell you a story and elderly woman traveling by bus had a layover during her. She purchased a bag of Oreo cookies from a vending machine and the bus terminal, and she found a place to sit down. 

Placed her cookies on the table next to her, she sat down, and started to read newspaper and, pretty soon she was joined by a young man who to her surprise, he opened the package of Oreo cookies and began to eat them.

 The woman didn't say anything, just glared at him, and then she grabbed a cookie, starts chomping on it, right? And the young man, sitting next door, he has this kind of funny look at his face, like, ‘what are you doing? And then he goes, and he takes another cookie. 

So the woman is now like furious, like this man is stealing her cookies, right? And he, and so she glares at him again, and this time grabs a cookie like kind of angrily, like, ‘rrr’, you know, like ‘these are my cookies’.

The young man he's like, okay, all right. I gotcha’, the he very kind of quietly and carefully takes another cookie, a third cookie. And there's at this point just, one cookie left.

 So he takes the last and hands it to the woman. She is like completely appalled. She cannot believe the nerve of this man. So she grabs the cookie, picks up her newspaper leaves, right? 

When she sits down on the bus, she opens up her bag looks inside and she finds that her package Oreo cookies, was in her newspaper, and that she had been eating young man’s cookies the whole time.

 In this story, the woman completely believed that she was being mistreated, taken advantage of, and practically abused. ‘What a rude young man! ‘She probably thought.

 She saw herself as innocent victim. Just trying to put up with insolence of him right. Her perception created the belief that he was terrible and she was a victim.

But in reality, he was being remarkably generous and she was quite rude. She was being passive aggressive, she was being mean, and she was actually stealing his cookies. 

So if we don't pay attention to our mind, we tend to notice the bad and to only pay attention to the negative in our lives and in our relationships. 

It’s easy to notice when our child leaves, the bathroom a mess, but it's pretty difficult to notice when they don't. It's natural to see the worst in our relationships. It's natural to see the worst in our boss or in our husband or in our friend. But, can actually change that. 

We can manage our perception, and thereby our level of happiness by choosing what we pay attention to, and we can choose to see the good in others. 

We're all human. We bring our own strengths and flaws to our relationships. We can conquer blame and hurtful thoughts by choosing to accept others as they are, by practicing gratitude, and by giving others the benefit of the doubt. 

Instead of assuming the worst, we assume that people have good intentions for what they do. So For example, if your wife is taking a really long time to get ready, you could focus on how irritated you feel or how frustrated it is. 

Or you could choose to say to yourself, I have a beautiful wife and she's taking the time to look good. I'm so thankful for her. 

How you choose to see the problem? What you chose to put your attention on is going to determine how happy or how cranky you are in your relationship. 

I'll give you another example. If you're feeling frustrated that your husband seems to be working all the time, you might start to feel resentful, and you might  start to think oh, he's such a workaholic,  all he cares about is his job. 

And instead you could replace that with I am so grateful that my husband loves to work, and is willing to work hard to support our family. 

Now later, this course we're gonna talk about being assertive and making requests. You can still make the request that he spends time with you. 

But If you're focusing on learning assertiveness skills or making good requests or solving problems, and you have the mindset where all you do is notice the negative, then it doesn't matter how good you are making requests. Your relationship’s going to suck. You're going be unhappy in your relationship because you're only noticing the negative.

 So if you want to have a happy relationship where you nurture love, you have to make an active practice to manage your perceptions, to notice the positive. 

So we're going to talk about a couple ways to do that. So the first one is Choosing to See the Positive. 

So you need to make a habit, an active practice. Notice the good in your life. You need to develop the skill of assuming positive intentions, and you need to learn to focus on what you do want for the relationship, instead of what you don't like about it. 

Second skill is Having Healthy Expectations. This is learning to be compassionate with other people's flaws. We're going to talk more about that in an upcoming section. 

And the third skill to do is Understanding Your Responsibility, and this will let you let go of shame and blame and comparisons, and learn to own your side. Now, we're going to talk more about each of these skills in upcoming sections. But we can improve relationships in leaps and bounds, if encouragers, instead of critics.

 So take a minute to do the workbook activity, ‘Fostering Appreciation,’ and then we're going to move on into the homework activity.

So for today’s homework activity, we're going to talk about how to create a habit of noticing the positive. Noticing the positive does not come naturally to most of us. 

So, one of the ways we're going to practice this is by building a habit. Of daily gratitude. I'm gonna ask you to get a journal or notebook and every day bring to mind the positive things your partner has done. 

It's important to choose a time to do this. That’s going to work well for you. So many people find that bedtime is a really good time to practice gratitude. 

Set a reminder in your phone, so that you don't forget, and write down at least three positive things that your partner has done that day. 

You can use it journal or a gratitude app or even just the Notes section in your phone. If you want to go the extra mile, you can share what you're grateful for with your partner, but that's not necessary. 

So, this is how I practice this. Every day of 5pm, which is a really stressful time for me? I'm cooking dinner, making dinner, or eating dinner, and my kids are tired and upset, right? Every day at 5 pm, my phone, chimes ‘remember, the positive’, and I ask my family, who's around me to share with me the best parts of their day, and I share mine. 

When you take the time to look for the positive, your heart is going to open up, you're going to feel more open to the people in your life.

You're going to feel more gentle, and more appreciative. When you change the way you see your partner, the way you feel about them will change. 

The habit of noticing and remembering the good is something that quietly feeds the seed of love, and if you do it just a little bit each day, your love is going to grow.

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