I was reminded again recently of how powerful the culturally given beliefs are – you know, those things we know are true, because things happen which reinforce them. For example, we can probably all find evidence in our personal experience that people are not to be trusted, or that the world is not a fair place. It is interesting to notice that we can also find evidence that the opposite is true. Most of us have experienced people being trustworthy, or something which felt very fair and just.
The evidence we choose to notice will affect how we expect others or the world to be. It really is our choice: evidence for all beliefs is there for us, otherwise no-one would believe them!
And have you noticed how we tend to get what we expect? This is because we give off an unconscious message that tells the person how we are viewing them, and nine times out of ten, they “play the game” and respond how we expect them to.
So why make life harder than it already is? Decide to believe what is more useful to you, and start collecting evidence!
1. Next time you need help from someone, assume that they will be helpful. Imagine them being open to your request, and see what happens.
2. When you come across someone who is optimistic about life, find out what they believe about people, and about how the world works. Deliberately look for evidence which supports their belief. (If you are already optimistic, list some of your own evidence).