Life is full of choices.
We consciously and unconsciously decide and choose our paths by making hundreds if not thousands of choices every day: What should I eat for dinner? What should I wear? To bike to work or take the car? Where to go? What to say to someone, what to see, what to do, and the list goes on.
The different possibilities each day holds for us is infinite, and is shaped by the choices we make. Sometimes we are sure and confident about our choices, and sometimes we are not sure which is the best to make. We live and learn, and often only time reveals to us how they play out.
Since our decisions affect the outcome of our lives, How are these choices decided? What then guides our decisions? The mind is a beautiful a complicated tool we have to use, and combinations of past experience, personal preference, instinct, education and intuition affect our decision making process.
A recent study found that specific neurons in the orbitofrontal cortex (OFC) play a central role in the wide range of simple decisions we make every day. Researchers discovered that specific neurons in the OFC assign a value to each option, while other neurons in the OFC activate to make a final choice.
All of these neurons have the ability to remap themselves and shift gears to make a different decision if circumstances are altered or change for any reason. In short, the study found that the brain places a value on certain objects, such as different types of food, and our decisions reflect what value we’ve placed on an object.
Previous conditioning can also affect the way we see things, and the values we place on certain things can affect what we focus on and what we tend to see. Try this fun picture quiz, which is similar to a Rorschach inkblot test, and find out what it means about your personality and view of the world.
Take a quick look at the following picture and remember the first image you see:
If you first saw the apples in the picture, you have a wonderful and sharp eye for detail. The apples corresponds with vigilance being able to easily find solutions to challenges and problems. Those who saw the apples don’t need to be right all the time, they focus on finding the best solution rather than trying to prove that they are ‘right.’ They go beyond their own conditioning and often are able to think outside of the box.
The apples are a fruit and are also the eyes of the face in image, and seeing the apples first means that you tend to see the value in situations where others cannot. You look for and discover the opportunity within the problem, and see them as challenges to be learned from rather than permanent issues.
Those who saw the apples also have an ability to see into the deeper meaning of life; to realize that cherished memories and time spent with loved ones are more important than material possessions, and that kindness is more important that always having one’s way. Stay focused on the love in your heart, and your love can be a great source of compassion for helping to solve the problems of others.
A Person Sitting
If you first saw the person sitting in the image it means that you are in connection with your true inner self. You tend to express your feelings and thoughts openly and honestly. You value being real more than being perceived as ‘perfect’ by those around you, because you understand that real people are not perfect, and that perfect people do not exist.
The person sitting is also reading a book, which signifies that your mind is attracted to learning and that you are already quite intelligent, and have likely studied many things in your life. Your knowledge of yourself extends to your ways of thinking and your conscious knowledge of your feelings.
You typically choose to think positive and understand that this way of thinking tends to bring about good feelings and good experiences. While not always loud and trying to be the center of attention, what you know of yourself, of your heart, and of the world in general is quite valuable and many people would benefit from you being a teacher. Integrate the practice of self-compassion into your already extensive knowledge of the self, and your heart can being can truly blossom.
If you first saw the face in the picture, it means that you are a beautiful person, both inside and out. Your beautiful heart is admired by many, and the people in your life can truly count on your kindness. You possess an elegance that keeps you graceful even amidst challenges, and you handle yourself in a noble and gentle manner. Your energy is strong yet soft, vulnerable yet self-assured, and you’ve been able to develop into this kind of person because of your deep wisdom.
You also tend to see the big picture in life, allowing you to move past temporary challenges in order to achieve big goals.
You are kind by nature; it’s how you treat yourself, it’s how you treat others, and it’s how you want the Earth to become. You speak to others from a genuine and heart-centered place within, and tend to be kind even to those who are not kind in return.
You may not have always ‘fit in’ in many things in your life, and this is for a good reason; you were not meant to ‘fit in’ to the world, you were meant to help create a new one. One that is more kind, more loving, and more in tune with your own inner nature of beauty.
Continue to stay in your heart and follow where it leads you. Consider spending some time growing in your kind ways by volunteering for a local charity, and learning everything you can while you’re there. You just may have some thrilling inspiration occur that can change your life and the world for the better.
Source: Understanding Compassion