August, 2016 – Perception = Projection
By Dr. Bonnie Lyon

What do you do when you just can’t stand yourself?

If you are difficult to get along with, you will find yourself dealing with difficult people. Perception equals projection. The less difficult you are the fewer difficult people you’ll have to deal with beginning with yourself. The place to begin change is to ask yourself, why? Why am I a difficult person?

The answer to this question requires some self-examination and observation. First, are your thoughts overly negative? Are you the one always bringing rain on a sunny day? Being overly negative will certainly increase your chances of being viewed as a difficult person. If you can openly accept that you’ve become the next question you must ask yourself is: Am I depressed?

Once you get a reading on your present state, it’s time to get real about any possible gains you might be experiencing by being difficult. Is being difficult getting you more attention? Are you difficult to get attended to faster by friends, family, and even strangers? Ever watch an irate airline passenger approach the desk during a flight delay. One minute they are yelling loudly as some poor airline attendant slowly slumps over their computer screen, the next they are somehow miraculously seated in first class when the flight finally boards.

So which is it, “the squeaky wheel gets the oil or “you catch more flies with honey than vinegar?” Although life may occasionally present situations where you do need to speak forcefully to be heard, for the most part, being cooperative and collaborative proves a more winning combination. At least, if you want to live a peaceable life. Ruffling feathers all the time can become very tiring.

I teach my clients how to improve their relationship with themselves first. Once you become more reliable and trusting of yourself you’ll find that others will find it easier to deal with you as well. Perception does equal projection. When you know, like and accept yourself, others will too.