I am currently listening to the vice presidential debate and my Facebook feed is full of political memes and posts from both sides of the aisle. As I have been watching the discussions occur, it has become obvious to me that our beliefs and values impact how we see the world. Here is one of my favorites examples.
Why? It perfectly explains how our personal worldview can impact the interpretation of the facts. I’ve watched the people see the same debate and read the same fact, draw conclusions about the debate wildly differently. I’ve come to the realization that we put on a “pair of glasses” when we review political information. I know that lenses in my glasses have a certain filter when I hear and watch the news. I am aware that I try to find information that reinforces my beliefs and value system. If we do this in our political decisions, then we need to become of aware where else the lenses prevent us from really seeing clearly.
I spend a large portion of my day working with teachers. If I am not aware, my viewpoint can get in the way. For example, I worked with a teacher, a few years back, and made the assumption that she was old school and didn’t want to listen to me (Yes, I know there is so much wrong about this). We had couple of conversations which I pulled pieces from it to use as evidence that I was right in my beliefs. Luckily, I stepped back, listened and watched. I realized that I was wrong and I was making assumptions about her and her teaching. Once I took off those glasses and saw this teacher, I was able work more collaboratively with her to help students achieve.
I will admit that I struggle sometimes with being aware of my lenses that can distort my viewpoint. I find that the distortion is less when I come from a belief that humans are good and want to what is right. I know that my responses and interpretations help move us forward. When I put on my glasses of fear and paranoia(I know you are shocked that I have a pair of these glasses) then it is hard to move forward and work with others. I also know when my put on my glasses of self-doubt that I begin to question my actions and my choices can be illogical.
My action steps for me is be aware of the glasses I am wearing. I continue to commit to wearing my rose colored glasses. It’s much better world this way.