You see the signboard ‘Beware of Dog’ on someone’s gate. Your perception is that there is a huge dog guarding the house. Imagine taking that sign and putting it outside your Boss’s office door. Now you have a different perception of the situation changes from being serious to hilarious. Similarly, if you change the frame of a picture, it may appear different to you. The frame may cause the picture to look bigger or smaller. When you put a different frame around a situation, it tends to change its contour, colour and context.
If you observe a person as rude, you get angry. When you reframe the context, imagining that the person is a friend and not a foe, you change the meaning of the whole situation. If a child is naughty and you react violently, it may resist or become more mischievous. If you show understanding and tolerance, the child might obey.
A great book that demonstrates the importance of attitude is Man’s Search for Meaning by Dr. Victor Frankl, a Swiss psychologist. In that book, he writes: ‘Life is 10 per cent of what you are given and 90 per cent of how you react to it’. He said that he never lost his sense of self in spite of physical abuse, torture and denial of basic necessities in a German concentration camp during World War II.
Many people believe that the meaning of life is to love. This can be done through caring for others or loving what you are doing all the time. The most important thing in life is to care for something more important than your life.
What we believe is different from what we genuinely are. People under hypnosis have acted on the most unlikely statements. A person was told that mere water was wine. He drank the liquid and became intoxicated. When a person under hypnotic spell was told that the weather is warm, he perspired profusely. People under hypnosis accept new truths, some false and some true. The fact is that we should not be under the spell of other things forces or attractions. Tulsidas once said: “I am troubled by two kinds of people, the good people and bad people.” When asked how good people trouble him, he said: ”Good people trouble me because of their absence and bad people trouble me because of their presence.”