Welcome to my Blog where I will be discussing all things unique, creative and exciting in the area of perception.
We will be looking at how to look at life in different ways, creating flexibility in our senses to adapt to change.
Let’s firstly look at the McGurk Effect, which was seen on BBC Two – Horizon: is seeing Believing? It shows that what we see can change what we hear. That in order to maintain within our system a coherent world view sometimes our sense of vision can over-ride and take over. This brings up the interesting idea that what we hear may not always be the truth, that we are hearing with our eyes. How incredible is our brain, integrating visual and auditory cues and determining whether to over-ride the message if there is conflicting information between the senses?
I think this is just a fascinating phenomenon that even though may not work on everyone highlights how communication is influenced by what we see when we are receiving information through sound and that our senses are working together to create information that makes sense to our understanding of the world.
How does this connect to counselling? I think for me when I witnessed this phenomenon it raised the idea of communication in general within relationships and the incredible job our senses do to provide information for us to interpret our environment and respond accordingly. However, because we are all so unique and experiencing different histories, we are impacted differently due to our individual interpretation of the situation. It is this individual interpretation of life events that influences our creation of reality.
We then start to see all the variations of responses that can occur due to the power of our subconscious and our belief patterns. Just like not all people are susceptible to the McGurk affect, we are all different in how we respond in relationships. I think it is also great to reflect on the power of the visual and the saying that a picture says a thousand words. A person’s body language may indicate disinterest, arms crossed, looking away or a glazed look in the eyes – powerful non-verbal communication – however the person may be saying, I am interested in what you are saying. Our visual experience will provide important information to assess more accurately the true message. We have so many filters that information needs to travel through that we really can see that miscommunication is easy to occur as our individual realities can be very different. Yet because of these moments of conflict we are given rich ground from which to know ourselves and the world and to grow and change as a result. The world is richer from our learning. It is also through these differences we are all able to create what another is unable to just because of our individual worldviews.