Change your Perception

Have you ever had an impression set from meeting or knowing about somebody and then you've been able to change your perception by finding out a bit more about them or by looking at the situation with an external perspective?

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I ask because I've been in London this week and one of the things I did was to go to see Wicked - a musical about the backstory of the Wicked Witch of the West from the Wizard of Oz.  Now, not to create any spoilers here but, I left with a very different and far more sympathetic perspective of the Wicked Witch of the West.

How often have you had this kind of realisation when you look at friends' situations (on your own) when you get to hear both sides of the story?  It can sometimes feel like things have been turned around in a way you weren't expecting.

Have you ever needed to change your perception?

#selfimage #coaching

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Change Your Perception - a blog post by Gillian Lewis: Spectrum, a Self Image Coach

Frequently when something affects you, or somebody close to you, it can be difficult to change your perception on the situation you are faced with, or you may be holding an impression which is not far short of mind reading another person's intentions with no concrete evidence to support your view - and that can cause a self-limiting belief which keeps you stuck in a situation.

How to Change Your Perception

​One technique that I will use when clients talk about experiencing conflict with these kinds of scenarios in their lives is the Empty Chair Exercise.

This can be done moving between chairs in the room, or it can be done figuratively whilst staying put. The reason for using different chairs is that the physical changes of moving between chairs alters your perspective and accesses your subconscious in a way that sitting still and imagining does not. However, either way you do it, it's carried out in four steps.

Firstly imagine the person you are in conflict with is sitting opposite you. Say out loud to them what you are feeling, what impact the situation is having on you; all of the things that are bottled up inside of you currently that you do not have an outlet to say to that person.

Then imagine how the other person will respond to what you have said to them and, again, say it out loud.

You might be surprised by some of the emotions, thoughts, and feelings which this response generates for you (as yourself in the first chair) so you may need to repeat step one and step 2 to respond to all of the responses that are generated.

Once all of the issues have been surfaced, move onto position three where you act as an impartial observer to what has passed and ask yourself:

  • What thoughts would you have if you were looking at other people telling you of the same situation? 
  • What advice would you have for them?
  • How do you feel now you are distanced from the immediacy of the situation?

The fourth step is to assimilate the experience in order for you to identify what approach to take, eg:

    • What direct steps you might take to address the issue?
    • What internal response you will have when faced with the experience in the future?
    • What affirmation you will adopt to bolster self-confidence?

Whatever works for you!

That Sounds Easy....

Written down, the steps appear quite easy, and for those with well-developed self-awareness it can be, but I know that for many people assessing and exploring your emotions fully on your own can sometimes be a difficult and painful experience that can be easy to duck out of when you do it on your own, or you might not know the right questions to ask of yourself in this situation to get to the root of the beliefs which keep you stuck.​

What can a Coach do?

Using a Coach to do this exercise helps since Coaches ask the right questions to unblock the beliefs in you. Obviously for very deep emotional wounds, a counsellor is best placed to help you work through the issues whereas a Coach will help you to focus on future activity to overcome self-limiting beliefs.

If that's something you want to explore further get in touch.

I'd love to hear your comments on this post

Gillian Lewis
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Gillian Lewis

Self Image Coach at Gillian Lewis: Spectrum Coaching and Consultancy based in Darlington, County Durham, UK
What on earth is a Self-Image Coach I hear you ask – it’s cross between a Confidence Coach and Image Consultant.

I help clients become happier and more confident by giving them a Makeover from the Inside Out to change their internal and external view of themselves.

I'm not really interested in fashion, just what clothes can do for your self-image - that's where the Forget Fashion blog title originated, so I won't be doing much commentary on the latest catwalk styles.Instead, I write about things I come across in life that make me reflect.Sometimes it's serious.Sometimes it's just fun.Hopefully you'll like my writing style, find what I write about interesting and enjoy the experience.If you do, share the love using the boxes below - thank you 😀
Gillian Lewis
FOLLOW ME
About Gillian Lewis

What on earth is a Self-Image Coach I hear you ask – it’s cross between a Confidence Coach and Image Consultant.

I help clients become happier and more confident by giving them a Makeover from the Inside Out to change their internal and external view of themselves.

I'm not really interested in fashion, just what clothes can do for your self-image - that's where the Forget Fashion blog title originated, so I won't be doing much commentary on the latest catwalk styles. Instead, I write about things I come across in life that make me reflect. Sometimes it's serious. Sometimes it's just fun. Hopefully you'll like my writing style, find what I write about interesting and enjoy the experience. If you do, share the love using the boxes below - thank you :-D