"People only see what they are prepared to see." - Ralph Waldo Emerson

In dealing with my own ADHD, I have learned that perception is key in many things, how I perceive something is typically far different than how most of the people around see it. This has resulted in me having to, often times, look at situations from multiple directions to attempt to keep in mind how others will be seeing something, but most people don't do this, they only look at things from their own perspective.

"We don?t see things as they are. We see them as we are." - Anais Nin

People with an altered mental status, be that temporary from injury, drugs or alcohol, or life long suchs as from a learning disability or ADHD will have a different point of view on many things, some of the signs of someone looking at things differently are: staring, tilting their head, being startled easily, being slack jawed, shuffling of feet, or sitting rigidly. There are other signs, but these are the common ones.

"It's not what you look at that matters, it's what you see." - Henry David Thoreau

The problem of perception is of course that each of us may miscommunicate because we do not understand one another, what we intend as a friendly smile may be seen as an aggressive baring of our teeth, or you may say something in a joking or sarcastic manner and someone does not pick up on your tone and decides you mean your comment seriously.

"If you are distressed by anything external, the pain is not due to the thing itself but to your own estimate of it; and this you have the power to revoke at any moment." - Marcus Aurelius

We each have a responsibility to ourselves to not let others dictate who we are or how we feel about ourselves, much of what we think based on comments of others may be totally wrong if we did not perceive their comments in the intended manner. The problem is when we do this day in and day out, we build our self image on these comments, and often times suffer because of it.

Perhaps in looking at things from other points of view we can learn how to keep from taking offense when people make comments that were not intended to be offensive.

27 Jun 2007 15:43:12


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