Dr. Wayne Dyer famously said that ‘when you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change’ although he never took credit for ‘inventing’ this saying.
When you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change is not just a clever play on words but a scientific fact. Quantum physics revealed this strange truth to us only recently.
Don’t you sometimes wish you had the ability to just change some bad experience in your life instantaneously?
At times we all indulge in the lure of quick fixes and the challenge of working through our problems often seem too arduous and like there is no light at the end of the tunnel.
There is, however a “quick fix” that can help you change virtually anything immediately. It is one of the key differences that separates happy, fulfilled and successful people from those who live a life of frustration, reaction and quiet desperation.
Perception is reality.– Lee Atwater
We all live in a world that we can “see” and “touch”, but this world is not really a physical world at all. It is actually a perceived world that exists only in your mind.
Although the physical world might be exactly the same, different people will “see” different things and consequently have different experiences. What we see might be the same but what we perceive is very different for every person.
When someone is born with thick corneal opacities they cannot see. Even when, later in life, an operation gives sight to that person, the person still cannot see because to them the world they “see” is just a blur of light, colours and disorganized shapes.
There is no meaning to what they experience with their senses. We see THROUGH our eyes and not WITH our eyes.
It is your mind that does the “seeing”.
The way we process and experience our world has nothing to do with the world itself. It is entirely “made up” of how we perceive it; the way we think about it.
This is all a long way to explain a simple fact: when you change the way you think, you can change anything.
Your entire existence is made up of thought.
You can not live one second of your day without a thought. When your thinking is not aligned with your highest self, things get out of whack.
The good news is that you absolutely can change the way you think but it will take a deliberate effort because of your beliefs.
What are Beliefs and Perceptions and Why Do They Matter?
In simple terms, a belief is a thought that you keep thinking. In most cases it is something that you thought so often that it is now an unquestionable “reality” in your mind.
Scientists used to believe that we respond to information flowing into the brain, but we now know, scientifically, that it is actually our interpretation of the information that determines our response.
Our past experiences create an expectancy that is primarily based on what we “know” and what we “know” is that which has happened before.
The mind quickly learns that “this means that” and in doing that it makes life easier. The brain simply can not think and process everything.
It is designed to create these shortcuts.
One of the main ways in which our minds make sense of what we actually see and experience is through what we call our beliefs.
A belief is a sense of certainty about what something means and for the most part your beliefs are a result of reference experiences from your past which lead us to think and feel and think and feel and think and feel in a certain way about a certain something.
It becomes ingrained in our minds.
Perception is a way of grasping and making sense of the “realities” around us. Perception links a meaning to what you take in with your senses that allows you to have the experience in your nervous system.
Because perception is based on interpretation we can change it. It is a way of looking at things.
The simple example is whether the cup is half full or half empty. Neither is factually correct but one creates a vastly different experience within you.
Just look at kids.
They have an unquenchable thirst for knowing “why” things are the way they are. At an early age they start to form, assign and match up meanings to what they see and the feedback they get.
This is where we start to form our perceptions, but as we get older we learn to stop questioning what we actually see.
This explains why we often see life the same way and why we keep doing things the same way, experience the same emotions and act in the same ways.
Things happen and you automatically assign a meaning to it based on your unconscious belief system that tells you what things mean.
The real truth however is that you are the master of meaning.
It is not the conditions of your life but your perception of it that determines the way you feel and what you will or will not do with it.
A change in perception is what turns the half empty glass into a half full glass.
Perception explains how two people can have exactly the same experience and one commits suicide while the other becomes an inspiration for generations to come. Whatever you perceive is going to be true for you, regardless of what you see.
Einstein said that “reality is merely an illusion, albeit a very persistent one.“
Realize that what you see, the circumstances of your life are not really “real” but merely your perception of what you actually take in through your senses.
By simply changing the meaning of what you see you can change it all. Most of your behaviour therefore is not really an action but rather a reaction based on how you did things previously.
The Observer Effect and The Way You Look At Things
Quantum physics has revealed a new model to look at reality and explain certain natural phenomena more accurately from a scientific point of view.
One of the really baffling concepts is what is known at The Observer Effect. In quantum theory, the act of observing can change the very thing you look at.
The act of observing particles not only brings them into existence but affects their behaviour.
This is a very significant finding because it starts to expose some of the connections between mind and matter.
It exposes the fact that we are indeed creating our reality through our intentions.
When you change the way you look at things you actually create a real change. Your perception is not just a passive act but an act of creation.
When You Change The Way You Look At Things, The Things You Look At Change …
When I first heard Dr. Wayne Dyer talk about this idea that when you change the way you look at things the things you look at change, it impacted me deeply.
This is a really powerful idea and it really is the simple idea of changing your perception. Changing the way you look at things, change what you look at and what you look for in anything.
This goes back to what we discussed earlier about the fact that it is the mind that “sees” and not the eyes. It is your thoughts that determine what you really see.
You are never really stuck but you are only stuck in using your old perceptions by reacting to what you see and experience and thinking the same thoughts about it.
You owe it to yourself to truly live your life by being truly in the present moment – not just re-acting on an old program that was installed into you without your conscious awareness.
There are only two ways to live your life. One is as though nothing is a miracle. The other is as though everything is a miracle.– ALBERT EINSTEIN
Perception is as easy to shift as thinking a new thought about the same thing.
What you see through your senses and your memory is not going to change but what you perceive is entirely up to you.
Your present and future experiences do not have to be the same as your past. You can change any experience from a sad story into an inspirational feat by simply changing your perception.
It’s all a choice, but if you don’t choose your perceptions consciously, your old beliefs will take over by default. It is never a case of whether life is beautiful but whether you are noticing?
So, how can you use the power of perception to change the way you think, the way you feel and consequently what you do and create in your life?
- The first and most effective way to change your perception of anything us to change your beliefs. Becoming aware of your beliefs in itself can open you up to new perceptions and consequently new experiences that serve you. Whenever something happens that you do not like just ask yourself “what else can this mean?
- If you keep running into the same brick wall, step one is to stop running. Step two is to take off your blindfold so that you can see the door and go through it. Slow down and really look at your situation or circumstances.
- This is not that. Stop attaching the same old labels to the same old experiences. The only meaning that is valid is the meaning you give something. Realize that meaning is never fixed but always assigned by you making a choice, even if it is unconscious.
- Ask yourself “what am I not seeing?” What you are not seeing is what’s preventing you from finding the empowering meaning in any situation and using it to your advantage. This question is what opens the door to new thoughts and new possibilities.
How Do You Change The Way You Look At Things?
We’ve touched on this throughout the lesson but I want to get a bit more specific and clear up some ideas.
There is absolutely no special skill or technique to change your thoughts. You simply do it. How do you change your thought from a dark rainy night to a beautiful sunrise on a beach?
You simply do it.
Thinking is not a special skill BUT deliberate thinking is. If you do not make an effort to deliberately steer your thoughts in the direction you choose, then it will be steered in the direction of where everyone else is going.
You do not have to learn how to think.
Everyone knows how to do that. What you do need to learn is how to become aware of what you are thinking and to change your thoughts when it does not support you.
Every thought gives birth to another. Every positive thought gives birth to another so you only need to get it started.
Always remember that when you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change. You are always just one thought away from changing anything and everything.
That which you give thought to and that which you believe or expect – IS!– Abraham-Hicks
The way you look at things tends to be habitual. It tends to be automatic and subconscious. It is the way you’ve always done it.
Deliberate thinking is an act of deliberate creation.
The way you re-create and remould your life comes down to changing your thoughts. You can not afford to blindly tag along as you’ve always done and hope for a change.
When external conditions change then we tend to be forced to change our thinking.
This is how most people ‘create’ change. They either work really hard to change external conditions or they wait around until it changes naturally.
If you want to deliberately change your life and manifest your best life then you simply need to take control of your thinking.
Going with the flow, reacting and responding will only bring you more of what you already have through the workings of the law of attraction.
When you change the way you look at things you change the root cause of everything in your life.
Your perception will permeate many thoughts and beliefs and has the power to affect much more than just a though.