So I’ve been reading this book “Top Brain. Bottom Brain” by Kosslyn & Miller. Yep- Science Geek strikes again. Disappointingly, they completely debunk the myth of right brain creative, left brain analytical, but that’s not what I want to tell you about today.
One of the things they said that made me think, was how your top brain can fool your bottom brain. Basically, if your top brain expects something to be a certain way, it changes the way your bottom brain makes sense of it. That means that your bottom brain can see a situation all wrong.
So, let’s assume that your brain has this “People are judgemental” thing going on. Let’s say you had a really good reason to think like that. Maybe your parents were critical or a sibling picked on you and made fun of you all the time. If it happened often enough, you would come to expect that people being judgemental is normal.
With this thought being normal you would expect that each person you met was judgemental. Clearly this is not the case as some people are incredibly accepting, warm, and lovely. But ….. if our top brain says “All people are judgemental” then our bottom brain will make different meaning out of gestures, actions, and words.
So someone might have a frown while they’re thinking about what you said and you might interpret it as them disapproving of your comment. They might raise a different viewpoint to yours and you might think they think you’re stupid or your argument is wrong. They might be a bit fidgety (maybe because they’re uncomfortable and thinking that you’re judging them) and you might interpret it as them not liking you and being antsy about getting away from you.
So you can see how easy it is for your bottom brain to misinterpret stuff when your top brain has primed it with false expectations.
This left me wondering how this works in my life. What am I expecting that is making me see the world a bit wrong?
And I started to think, the best place to begin to look would be where life is the most painful. Seriously, if you’re misinterpreting things in a good way then why would you want to change it?
So having identified where I do this the only way I could think to change it was to keep asking myself “Is this how I want to see the world?” if I’m feeling pain.
Anyway, I’m going to try it. See how it works for you.