It's All Up to You (Nobody is Coming to Save You!)Written by Tony Davies
As painful as this realization may be, it is absolutely true. Wherever we are in our lives and whatever we are doing, it is because we have put ourselves there. It is our choices and decisions (either conscious or not) that have brought together circumstances resulting in our current reality. If we want to change our reality, then we must begin to make different choices.
It’s an easy thing to say, but much more difficult to actually do. Why? Because most of choices we make are not actually choices at all, but are based upon conditioned responses! The vast majority of people (estimates range as high as 95%) do not actually choose their responses; they simply react to outside stimuli. For absolute proof of this, simply take a drive in a large urban area and watch for incidents of road rage! "Flipping bird" at another driver is nothing more than a conditioned response - and is a sure sign that driver is not self-aware.
The old adage that “we are product of our environment” is absolutely true – as our parents, teachers, clergy and other role models acted, thus do we act. Children learn from observing actions of their role models, rendering expression “do as I say, not as I do” totally irrelevant. It is this principle that explains, among other things, why children of abusive parents often become abusers themselves.
So how does one break destructive cycle of stimulus / reaction? First, by recognizing that we, as individuals, are problem: only through taking responsibility for our actions can we come to crossroads and begin to take charge of our lives. Once we have made this leap, then answer is easy (although not necessarily easy to accomplish), and can be summed up in one simple word – THINK!
Other People's OpinionsWritten by Charlotte Burton
Other People's Opinions
In a society where interaction is part of everyday life, and other people form a vital part of life, other people's opinions are actually important in where we fit into society. However, we often think we know what other people are thinking and base our actions around those 'apparent' opinions.
Yet how do we actually know whether our assumptions about other people's opinions are true or not? Frankly, we don't. This is where Fundamental Attribution Error comes in. To put it into plain Engligh, it means that we make a basic error in assuming other people's thoughts without checking or otherwise knowing whether we are right or not in that assumption.
We base these assumptions on our schema of world (another Psychology term which means a system of beliefs we have about how world works from how to order food in a restaurant to how we 'should' live our lives). These schema are made up from our experiences in world, with some schema being made up from other people's schema which we have picked up along way: such as our parents' and friends' schemas.
Now mostly, these errors are fairly harmless: it is when we start living our lives entirely around what we think other people are thinking that it can become 'dangerous'. Many people fall into trap of becoming practically obsessive about what other people are thinking of how we behave that everything that we do becomes subject to what we think other people are thinking.