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Have you ever felt misunderstood? This could be why...

About a year ago, I got into a spicy discussion on Facebook because I posted a status that read, “Truth is relative.” Some agreed, some disagreed, and some did not understand.

When I say truth is relative, what I mean is, we all have our own truth. And our truths may be vastly different than our peers, even when evaluating the same situations. Differences in truths is one of the primary causes of most all disagreements. And therefore, we should be intentional about wrapping our heads around the fact that we all see things differently. The reason why our truths will always vary is because our experiences are unique to the lives each of us has lived. And these experiences stick with us and govern the way we see the world. In essence, each day we are graced to live in reality…in the present; however, most of us use our past to create a filter through which we attempt to process the present. It takes much intention to accept things in the world exactly as they are (the true nature of a thing) without using our filter.

We must be willing to recognize that we can look at the same picture and see different images. We can experience the same situation and different feelings can be stimulated. We can eat the same foods and describe the taste of them differently. All these things are possible because many times we are processing the information through the worlds we have created in our minds. The worlds we create in our minds and the judgments we make have much to do with the information or experiences we use as reference points. From childhood until this very moment, our mind has stockpiled images and experiences that most of us live within.

These stockpiled images and experiences form core beliefs which in turn become part of our identity. The beliefs are so strong because what we see through our filter and what is happening are completely overlapped. As a result, even when we can slip outside of the world our mind has created to see and process evidence that contradicts our core beliefs, very seldom are we willing to accept this evidence and change our minds. Doing so causes too much discomfort…it causes us to release portions of ourselves that we believe make us who we are.

The variation in truth and how we perceive the world is the primary reason why practicing acceptance and non-judgment is so critical. It is my opinion that if we choose to provide safe spaces to allow people to be true to their nature, the consequence is a world filled with love…perfect communication coupled with perfect connection.

Acceptance is when we not only hear other people’s opinions, but we respect their opinion – knowing that their life experiences have brought them to this very point.

Acceptance is knowing when we communicate our thoughts, we are not communicating with the intent to make everyone else see things from our perspective, because we know this is not possible.

Acceptance is loving people where they are without judgment, without trying to turn them into a reflection of you.

When I first began to work on accepting other people, it was extremely difficult because I had not yet fully accepted myself. But, when I did, I found freedom, I eliminated stress, and I started functioning from a place of unadulterated love.

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