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Are you biased?

People are becoming more aware of biases. The truth is, everyone has biases based on how they were raised, where they lived, personal experiences, and who were and are the people who influence them.

Prejudices and preferences contribute to biases and can establish one's viewpoints. If someone grew up in a tumultuous family environment, they may see family as unsafe. If they experienced childhood sexual trauma, they may feel sex is unsafe. If they experienced racism, sexism, or discrimination of any type, they may see skin color, gender, or systems as unsafe. Bias toward things, people, or places that were established by traumatic experiences are difficult to counter on your own. Bias in general is very difficult to change without the ability to confront, learn, and grown from understanding those biases and the impact they have in one's life.

Growing up in the 1960's and 1970's. I saw and experienced a lot of things I didn't understand. Those experiences had both negative and positive influence in creating the person I am today. We are a product of our DNA, our upbringing, and our environments. We do not grow up in a box, and even if we did, we would have a bias toward boxes! Our experiences, things we learn,even just living life, offers us opportunities to gain knowledge and insight. Wisdom comes from knowing the truth about what we learn. Not accepting everything at face value is the key to gaining wisdom. Wisdom is different from knowledge because what we learn may have the author or presenter's bias included, which can skew the facts toward their particular beliefs. We see this in our relationships, the workplace, politics, the education system, news commentators, and social personalities. When you listen carefully enough to what someone is saying, you can often hear their bias in their choice of words and see it in their actions.

You are not responsible for correcting other people's bias and you can't force them to believe your opinion is better as you may be biased in your own perspective. Therefore, instead of pointing out other people's bias, seek to know your own and adjust accordingly. When we give other's grace and understand why they believe what they believe, we can learn about that person without judgement. When we seek to understand our own biases, we can give ourselves grace when we error. Once we are aware of our biased mistakes, we can ask for forgiveness from others, and change. This is what it means to repent. This is humility.

“Judge not, that you be not judged.

2 For with what judgment you judge, you will be judged;

and with the measure you use, it will be measured back to you.

Matthew 7:1-2

Vicki Coffman LMFT83503

If you'd like to learn how to live intentional, check out my book of the same name: Live Intention. Live the life you always wanted, but never believed you could. Available at Barns and Noble, Amazon, and iTunes


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