A Different Viewpoint, A Different Reality
“My perspective is my reality,” but is this really true? Perspective is the way we see the world. It comes from our personal point of view and is shaped by life experiences, values, attitudes, our current state of mind, the assumptions we bring into a situation, as well as many other things. Through our own perspective, we define what makes sense to us, which can be different from how others see things.
Whatever season of life you're in, your perspective is important. Your perspective is based off your past and how your life experiences have taught you to think. If you don't like your perspective, you can learn how to adjust and control your perspective, so you can see it through a different lens.
If you've ever been to an optometrist, you've experienced this part of the eye exam to determine your eyeglass prescription. Which is better? One or two? A or B? Using a special equipment, the optometrist uses alternating series of lenses to fine tune your prescription. There isn't a right or wrong answer, it completely depends on the eyes of the person behind the lens. It's truly your point of view.
With that being said, it can be easy to see how someone's past can interfere with their present perspective. When you think of things such as relationships or finances...what are your automatic thoughts or feelings?
In a new relationship were you able to trust right away or is does that take a long time? When you think of finances and money is that a positive or negative topic? In every situation how we feel is based on a collection of past experiences.
Whether it's a mortgage or first date...our subconscious looks at the objects/situation and computes whether it is positive or negative which triggers our nervous system's response, based off what our brain tells us to do. Depending on what you've experienced in the past, it can alter your perspective in the present. For example...hearing the word, "mortgage" brings back negative feelings after I fell behind in my mortgage payment years ago. I was going through a divorce and my ex-husband took me off of his health insurance during the time of our separation without telling me. During that time, I was diagnosed with Non-Hodgkins Lymphoma and wasn't aware I didn't have any health insurance until I went for my PET Scan. (Just FYI...the average PET scan is around $5700) It's a moment I'll never forget. I had a wonderful job and had always worked full time but until our divorce was final, I wasn't eligible to change my health benefit enrollment. So I had to choose what to pay for first. Was it my mortgage payment or paying upfront, out of pocket for a PET Scan followed by additional tests and then cancer medication and treatment. Obviously I chose my health and paid for those so there wasn't a delay. If you're asking why he'd unenroll me before we were divorced without letting me know? I went to dinner with my friend and he was there....on a date with another woman. This was a few hours after he texted me, "I can't wait to see you tomorrow at marriage counseling." I immediately changed the door locks on the house, cancelled any further marriage counseling and was done.
The same thing can happen if there are areas in your life that you've not dealt with. No matter how long of a gap in time, you can be triggered by sounds, smells, or situations. You may feel intense and instant fear, heart racing, stomach churns, yet nothing is happening that makes you unsafe. Although it feels abnormal...what you're experiencing is completely normal. Our perspective when it comes to things that trigger us was engrained in us whenever the experience occurred and your body is conditioned to this response. Unless you do something to change your perspective, your body will react. You hold thousands of beliefs "inside" completely based on your past.
I challenge you to think of experiences in your life that could have shaped your perspective of things. "The most positive action we can take about the past is to change our perception of it." ~Deepak Chopra. In life, past and present, there's always going to be pain, joy and everything in between. Your experience of your life and your brain are shaped by what you choose to focus on. You can remain stuck in the past or choose positive thoughts and memories and move forward. It takes time and a conscious effort but it's not impossible. You will have days where you move one step forward and two steps back...and thats ok. It's normal. Just don't continue going backwards. Stay focused and take one step at a time. You've got this and you're not alone.