Mar 23 , 2021
Many of our problems with other people often stem from attributing negative motivation without testing our own assumptions. When we assume negativity about others, our minds will be focused on finding evidence to fit our beliefs. This line of thinking usually sends an unwelcoming energy to the other person, who then reacts out of defensiveness. Thus, “validating” our initial suspicions. And the cycle continues until there is an unspoken tension. We are just waiting for people to fill in the narrative that we’ve already created in our heads. In essence, it just becomes another form of the self-fulfilling prophecy.
When we are put on the defensive by another person’s preconceived notions of us, the perception and motivation of the situation is geared toward behaviors of protection and guardedness, skewing our original thoughts and feelings. As a result, this creates a sense of distrust, misunderstanding, and distorted communication.
Thoughts for the Week
To avoid such situations, try to come from a neutral position. This reduces emotional noise as well as giving the other person a chance to freely express his or her thoughts without having to adapt the communication through the lens of defensiveness. As a caveat, there will always be innately difficult individuals but why not try to reduce the drama as much as you can? Life is too short to dwell in misunderstanding and negativity!