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Point of view

When the change you need to make is obvious to everyone but you

Saturday, February 18, 2012 by: Mike Bundrant
Tags: point of view, perspective, happiness

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(NaturalNews) Mike, you're breathing right in my face. Can you back off, please?

My wife doesn't mince words, thank goodness. I was leaning down to look at her computer screen and, apparently, invaded her space. She asked me to have a look, though. What gives? An image came to mind as I put myself in Hope's shoes. There I am typing away at my laptop and, suddenly, this big hairy gorilla thing crouches down, unannounced, with hot breath...

Ok I get it. Sorry, Babe.

There was a time when I would have gotten defensive at Hope's feedback. When Hope would point something out or ask me to change my behavior, I would react as if she had violated some sacred trust, as if she had no right to have a problem with anything I might do. Immature adults are fascinating.

With such a limited perspective, I went through the world as a narcissist and that was unbearably difficult. I was simply unaware of the impact I had on other people. My therapist finally pointed it out. He didn't mince words, either. Mike, you are narcissistic. People are going to have problems with you. He had earned enough of my respect and provided enough evidence that I believed him. When I recovered from the admission, I set out to change things and begin to give the people in my life a break. Here is one of the tools that were instrumental during the process.

Neuro-Linguistic Programming's Perceptual Positions model demonstrates that every relationship offers three points of view, described below.

First position

First position represents your individual point of view. You have a lifetime of experiences that have lead to the formation of your personal beliefs and values. Your feelings and opinions are of utmost importance in first position. In first position you notice the behavior of others and how it affects you as an independent person. You have your own private mind, dreams and personal desires. First position is where these are manifest, where the boundaries of your identity are established and maintained.

Second position

Second position is where another's point of view is considered. Second position is possible to the degree that you realize that those with whom you interact have their own opinions, beliefs, values, and feelings. Your behavior directly affects them in some way. In second position you explore how they are thinking of you - how others must perceive you.

Phrases such as walking in someone else's moccasins come from second position. When someone says, "If I were you..." they are actively taking second position.

Third position

Third Position is a detached point of view. It occurs when you remove yourself from both your own and the other's feelings. Doing this allows you to see the big picture or the pattern of relating between the two people (you and the other). The goal of third position is to take a neutral, objective point of view and see things as part of a larger whole.

Change your perspective and a new world opens before you

Each position has unique value. For self-centered people, learning second position works wonders. For anxious people, third position offers respite. For people pleasers, developing a strong first position is a revelation. Flexibility among the three positions makes for a mature, balanced person and a sophisticated communicator.

Of course, it takes work, a willingness to be aware and practice. Often, we need to deal with the underlying issues that drive us toward one position and away from others. And of course, there is no magic cure. Today, I still need to be careful not to take others for granted. I pay attention to feedback with the awareness that I may have a blind spot and that others certainly have a perception of me that I don't see. So, I rely on second position. I don't always agree with other people, but I come to that conclusion through consideration of various points of view.

Which perceptual position offers you the most opportunity for growth?

About the author:
Watch the free video The AHA! Process: An End to Self-Sabotage and discover the lost keys to personal transformation and emotional well-being that have been suppressed by mainstream mental health for decades.

The information in this video has been called the missing link in mental health and personal development. In a world full of shallow, quick-fix techniques, second rate psychology and pharmaceutical takeovers, real solutions have become nearly impossible to find. Click here to watch the presentation that will turn your world upside down.

Mike Bundrant is co-founder of the iNLP Center and host of Mental Health Exposed, a Natural News Radio program.

Follow Mike on Facebook for daily personal development tips.

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