We all do it, it's what help helps us navigate this reality, yet how can we do it in such a manner as to be productive as opposed to destructive?
So often when we encounter someone new we immediately begin making assumptions. Perhaps based on how they dress, gender, accent, style, colour of their skin, attitudes, posture.. Anything that reminds us of other encounters, we'll pick up on to try and better understand that person. To know how to relate..
You know you might see someone dressed in a suit and assume they're a boring business man, who doesn't have fun, and talks about intellectual stuff that bores you.
Or you might see a girl dressed in colourful harem pants, with long dreads. And make the assumption they're a lazy hippy, who smells, and doesn't take life very seriously.
It's so easy, it comes naturally, and there's nothing wrong with that in itself. The mind automatically goes into it's recesses to see what experiences you might have already had with somebody similar. To try and understand, allowing us to know how to better relate to somebody perhaps. So as perhaps not to cross any boundaries, or make offensive remarks.
So in that respect it is very useful
Yet at the same time, it can be oh so limiting. If you just stay in that box and forget there is whole world outside.
Because we're so fixated on our ideas of how a person, sometimes we forget to see a person in their entirety.
It's like looking at a star through a telescope. You do see the magnificence of star, yet you don't see the whole tapestry of the night sky. Which is also beautiful and so much more intricate than the one individual star.
Again, there is nothing wrong with this per se. I'm sure we've all been on both ends of this.. making the generalisation, and being generalised about.
And it's really not nice sometimes when we experience it first hand. When someone makes a generalisation about us that isn't true, yet chooses to see this. And so that is their reality.
So how do we overcome this?
And step beyond these limitations of who we are...
and step into the fullness of who we could be?