Our lives are largely guided by one overriding thing. That ‘thing’ is meaning. We are constantly on the hunt for it, we cherish it when we get it and we are anywhere from annoyed to confused by anything that doesn’t appear to have it.
It’s so massively important because it’s simply how we make sense of the world. How can the world function for us if it has no meaning? If there was no meaning would we get into long term relationships? If there was no meaning would we read books? If there was no meaning would we ever feel anything? I’m sure we could philosophise (ooooh, check me!) over this for a long time but bizarrely if we did would we not be debating what it would mean for us if the world had no meaning? Does that not prove the point!?
But meaning can get us into bother, can’t it? When something happens, for instance, that we don’t fully understand like someone says something cryptic or ambiguous or does something out of character or that inadvertently causes a problem or hurts us. Our minds race off, looking for what this could possibly mean. The problem is if it doesn’t find something it just bloody well goes and makes it up!
Think of this; your boss comes in tomorrow, looks you right in the eye, says nothing to you at all and sits down at his or her desk. What does that mean?
Or how about this one; you go to a job interview and the person in directly before you comes out of the room, looks at you and says ‘Good Luck’. What does that mean?
This is an interesting experiment. There is almost an infinite number of responses. But it gives you insight. Insight into your inner processes, beliefs and values. Did you see them both as negative? Maybe the first one you imagine you’re about to be fired or have done something wrong and the second one you hear sarcasm and ego in that voice.
Or maybe just the opposite, a boss that trusts you to get on with it and a generous and gracious offer of luck in a high pressure situation.
The fact is neither is right and neither is wrong. They both mean nothing because, in reality, they don’t exist. Does that makes sense? You have created meaning on fragments of information, piecing them together and imagining a full picture when you only had a few pieces of the jigsaw.
And this is what we do isn’t it? When we aren’t in full possession of the facts we don’t go and find out what we need to know, ask the people involved or even give everyone the benefit of the doubt until proven otherwise. Noooo! That would be too sensible. We just go and make it up, we fill in the gaps with anything that appears similar and then we justify it to ourselves by pulling up half baked evidence that backs up whatever bullsh1t conclusion we came to about the whole situation in the first place. We refuse to see reality.
Reality. What a concept! One of the changes I love to see in my clients is the day when the little things lose their big meanings. This is the day when the things that used to mean they couldn’t move on or couldn’t be happy fall away and leave them clear to notice the bigger meaning to everything they are, everything they do and everything they have. You can have that too.
The world is very simple yet we have an incredible need to make it complicated. Begin looking for the simplest meaning in everything that happens and enjoy the freedom from the bullsh1t of an over complicated life. Look up a thing called Occam’s Razor and apply it every day.
This is a fish.