Whether or not you are on a spiritual path, the title of this post holds true. No one thinks the way you do; no one’s mind operates as yours does. Everyone has completely different mental associations regarding very basic experiences (much less the more complicated ones!) and from those mental associations everyone has different emotions attached to those experiences; neurologically, everyone thus also has different patterns of brain/body activity in the form of tiny electrical neuron “signals”.
For example, we all know what “breakfast” is. Some people eat breakfast in a car (and everyone’s car is different) some at work (and everyone’s work is different), some not at all. People’s experience of place is different. Some people eat a Mcsandwich, some donuts, some fruit and a nutrition bar. Everyone’s experience of substance is different.
These types of difference are noticeable and easily overcome if the place or substance changes, like having pancakes on the weekends, joining a friend at a restaurant, or socializing after a Sunday meeting.
The invisible associations like emotions or neuron patterns are much more difficult to ascertain, but these invisible associations influence behavior, and thus can affect how people relate to others.
For example, what if breakfast is the loneliest point in a child’s day? What if breakfast is where two spouses argue over their hectic schedules and how little time they have for each other or for themselves? What if breakfast is where grandma sits quietly drinking coffee…then one day grandma is no longer there?
You never really know how people have experienced anything. You never really know what mental/emotional associations people bring to situations and relationships.
Sometimes, this is called “baggage”, but it’s only referred to as such when it causes “a problem”, when there is a lack of understanding about those invisible influences.
Doing personal or spiritual work sheds light on these invisible influences. An adult who was a lonely child may intentionally separate him or herself at a group breakfast, because being lonely is what they know and are comfortable with. Arguing over time and responsibility may be an expression of really wanting more love and time with that other person. A loud or boisterous person may be expressing a need to fill a sad void.
These influences are underneath everyone’s behavior. When we become aware of such associations within ourselves, we are able to understand our behaviors better. Understanding brings greater choice, greater self-determination. We are no longer susceptible to the unseen influences, because we can see them for what they are and how they affect us. We can choose how we want them to affect us or if we want them to affect us.
More than this, we can begin to see the invisible influences that affect others, and bring patience, love, and acceptance to people and our interactions.
There are many ways to clear your own mind, gain awareness, and bring in the light of understanding. You have options. Do you already do this work? What do you do? If you’d like some suggestions or don’t know where to start, reach out to me and we’ll talk.