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Why Perception is Everything According to People Who Live By It

Joe Pregadio/ Unsplash

Joe Pregadio/ Unsplash

I've been seeing the phrase,perception is everything, everywhere lately. I had a vague idea of what it meant, but I wasn't a hundredpercentsure about my interpretation. I thought that how we saw something wasn't in our control, but that's not true at all. In fact, it couldn't be more wrong.

In an article, writerJahiel Yasha Kamhisays, "Our perception—how we become aware of success, failure, happiness, friendships, love, and everything else—is just perception. It is how we perceive failure or defeat, and what we do with it that makes all the difference." Perception is everything because its influence is considerable.

We Can Interpret Our Lives in the Way That We Want

Our perceptions have an enormous impact on our life's journey, and when used in the right way can give us understanding and clarity. Some people liken perception to a self-fulfilling prophecy—if you expect something bad to happen, your subconscious mind will make it happen.

Luckily, the opposite is also true and that by choosing to see things in a positive light, you attract more good into your life. We all want a life filled with joy and abundance, not one of negativity.

According tomental health consultant, AdinaMahalli, when we expect negative outcomes from something, we're likely to put less effort and energy into making it work, which means that it stands less of a chance of success. But when we have high hopes for a situation, we're extra motivated, speak positively, and are ready toproblem-solvealong the way.

The Way We Look at Things Shapes Our Reality

"Your point of view literally creates your reality, "says Intimacy Expert,AllanaPratt."If you choose (novictimshere, we are creating our reality!!) to see the gift in experiences, to see things from a place of gratitude that we get to experience something…If we look for what's right, what's good, what's the message…we will find it."

Perception is everything because what else shapes the kind of life you want to live and the kind of person you wish to be with a small mindset change? We've all got a point of view, so it makes sense to use it to better our lives.

You're the Architect of Your Life

No rule says that you have to see things in the exact way they appear to be. You choose what to focus on and how you look at it. "Perception is more important than reality in shaping our lives," says Business Coach,Stacy Caprio. "We react andactbased on our perception of events and other's thoughts, not on the reality of events and what others are actually thinking. You can shift this in your favor by perceiving the world more as you would like it to be than it actually is." Changing your perception canhelp you manifestthe kind of life you want.

For Perception to Work, You've Got to Have Faith

Perception is everything if you choose to believe it. If you're just going through the motions and pretending that you believe instead of genuinely believing it, it probably won't work. You have to commit to believing in the process, and then you'll be able to see the benefits and upsides of all the things that happen—good or bad.

"When we see wonder, beauty, and light, we live as if that is what the world is made of—and everything changes," saysHannah Hassler. "By theactof choosing to perceive our own power, our own light, and our own potential, we call those very things into being. Perception is available to all of us, but it's up to each of us to decide whether we will harness its power to change our lives." Faith helps you to harness the power of sight.

There's a Perception Formula

If how you think determines how youactand react, then it's up to you on how to implement the idea that perception is everything.Speaker/Author/Coach, JeannettePaxiahas a formula for this—E +R = O aka Event +Response=Outcome. She says, "The only thing you can change is your response, and your response is driven by your perception.

For example, if your significant other comes home upset with something that happened at work and snaps at you, do you think to yourself, 'Oh, I did something wrong and the rest of the night is ruined' or do you think 'Well, he/she had a bad day but he/she isn't mad at me, just mad. I'm not going to take that on." Perception helps us not to take things personally andactfrom a place of pain.

Perception Affects Our Whole Selves

Saying that perception is everything isn't just hyperbole; it's a successfulthought-process. Our perception doesn't only affect us intellectually or emotionally, it can cause a physical reaction as well. Magician, Mitch Williamssays, "How we respond to anything, not just in terms of our conscious actions and outcomes, but also neurologically, our heart rate, blood chemistry, breathing, posture, emotional response, and beliefs (physical, emotional, mental) is completely dependent on our perceptions of a given situation and for the most part not at all whatever the objective 'reality' of the situation actually is." Your body believes what the mind tells it.

Mitch goes on to say, "In my work as a magician and inspirational speaker, I deliberately use magic to influence people and twist their perceptions of reality to evoke an emotional, psychological response. In many cases, their psychological state is radically transformed—to wonder, joy, and inspiration simply by playing with their perceptions of what is possible, even when they know that something that they perceive isn't possible."

Perception is Everything Because it Helps Us to Grow

Another way in which perception is everything is the way that it increases self-awareness. When you're able to look at your place in the world and how your actions can affect not only yourself but others, it will make you more aware of yourself."

Building more self-awareness allows people to adopt a growth mindset. As a positive consequence, they start seeing the possibilities in themselves and the world," says Transformational Coach,DominiqueMas."Self-awareness is the key to growth and a meaningful and fulfilled life."

Perception Can Reframe Failure into a Learning Experience

A significant way in which perception is everything ishow it helps us deal with failure. Nathalie Noisette, Host ofIAmNatNoisePodcast, says, "When an individual experiences some failure, they may walk into the next project or venture with less enthusiasm. Instead of seeing the past experience as a learning experienceor asastepping stoneto the next level, they lose momentum. For many, the bigger the perceived failure, the harder it is to bounce back."

Failing can be a significant setback if you let it, but if you change your perspective, you'll be able to modify your entire attitudetowardthat failure and transform it into alife-lesson. Nathalie Noisette suggests a better way to deal with a lack of success than letting it derail you. "The individual [should] establish a new relationship to failure. When a future failure occurs, instead of seeing it as a failure, they can look at all the lessons learned and use this information to set up the next few successes."

Perception Helps You Avoid Validating Your Failures

But how do you put perception is everything into practice? Speaker and Personal Development Coach,Jessi Beyertalks about how she turned a negative situation into a learning experience, "My dad told me I wasn't allowed to live with him (after he already said I could) and yet his girlfriend,whomhe became a couple with very shortly after he divorced my mom, was staying over all the time. How could that possibly be a good thing for me?"

"I was able, though, to recognize that she was a crisis counselor (a field that I was considering going into). Therefore, I now had the opportunity to ask someone firsthand questions about the career field. Sometimes it's the little things. By really putting time into finding that one golden nugget in an overall bad situation that will shift you into a growth mindset and make that situation seem not as bad." Accentuate the positive as they say.

Perception is Everything, Especially When it Comes to Our Relationships

How we react to our partners can take a healthy relationship and turn it toxic. If you feel as if everything your partner says is an attack on you or that they're not supportive or caring enough for you, your resentment will grow. But if you choose to give them the benefit of the doubt or put yourself in their shoes and show them some compassion, your relationship will grow even stronger.

"Our beliefs, how we perceive and practice them can have a domino effect on others, "says Elliot Robinson ofGunsmith Fitness. "If you choose to be kind, you reap kindness in return. And this simple philosophy becomes a part of us which helps cultivate meaningful and lasting relationships." A successful relationship takes understanding, patience, and empathy.

How to Use Perception to Bring About Change

The first step to accepting that perception is everything and allowing it to work its magic is changing your mindset. Lisa Swift Young,authorof the bookPause 2 Praise, recounts what happened when her family changed their perception. "In the summer of 2016, we dealt with three devastating and unexpected deaths in our family. Additionally, my husband was laid off, and my daughter was in a very tumultuous relationship. In the process, we bonded together and started a practice of collaborative mindfulness."

"The intent was to focus on the things that we were thankful and grateful for. Our practice "Pause 2 Praise" is an intentional way to make time each day to think about what's going well and acknowledge our gratefulness. We couldn't stop death, relationship issues, or any other thing that might happen in our community. However, we could make time to be mindful, grateful, and thankful. In the past three years, we've launched four new businesses and established a family giving foundation. Proof that perception can become a reality."

Perception is everything is only three words, but those words have the power to change your life for the better. Once you get into the habit of looking at things in a more positive way, it will become something that you do without even thinking about it. It's not unlike having anattitude of gratitude, in fact, the two things work well together to create positivity and joy in your life.