I cannot hear what you say because I do not want to listen.   I am interpreting it all in my head going la la la la la la la

………

Some things are good to be made up, such as your bed.  Getting into a made bed at night just feels good, and the bed looks better during the day if it is made.  The mind, however, is another matter.  At times, the mind needs to have made itself, but often we make up the mind and then we refuse to listen to anyone who wants to tell us a better way exists.  Sometimes it’s like making the mate sleep on the couch because we don’t want to mess up our beautifully made bed.  Sometimes, in order to really hear another person, to communicate fully with them,  we need to peel back the covers of our mind and see if something has crawled in while we weren’t looking.

Pre-conceived notions   

What's under your sheets?

One of the main things you could find under the sheets of a made-up mind are pre-conceived notions.  I believe, therefore….  I recently read a blog post and subsequent discussion about people using the riding carts at WalMart and other stores.  Someone (not these people) had made a joke about the pre-requisite for using those being obesity.  The pre-conceived notion:  Fat people are lazy.  Believe me, fat people are no more lazy than other people – some are and some aren’t – just like the rest of the human race.  Those making fun of these people have no idea what physical limitations the rider has, what he or she has gone through, their work ethic or anything else about them.  They have a pre-conceived notion that keeps them from opening their mind.  This kind of preconception also causes pain to others who are judged.  There are many different kinds of these pre-conceived notions; all of us have them; all of us need to look under the sheets of our mind, see what’s there, and clean them out.

Prejudice/Bias

Another ick you may find under those sheets runs along the same lines as the pre-conceived notion.  Prejudice or bias (or even racism) takes the pre-conceived notion to a new level.  When we have already made up our minds about a group of people:  fat people, skinny people, old people, different cultures, different skin colors, different income levels and such.  This drives our thinking to such an extent that we act on it without even realizing this is hidden underneath our made-up mind.   This one comes up every day in political debate.  Republicans and Democrats (in the US) have prejudices (based on their pre-conceived notions) about the other side.  They filter everything they hear (yes BOTH sides) through this prejudice and hear what they want to hear.  When it comes to political posturing, I envision a room full of 2 year olds with hands over their ears, screaming at the top of their lungs.  Prejudice comes in all shapes, sizes, colors, political and religious affiliations.  If this is under the covers of your ‘made-up mind’, you may want to totally remake the bed with clean sheets.

Anger/Hostility

Another ick you may find  under the sheets of your pre-made mind is misplaced anger or hostility.   Maybe you have lost a loved one and experiencing grief.  Maybe someone hurt you, and you carry a chip on your shoulder that you dare others to knock off.  These other people see your rage, but have no clue what they did (because they didn’t) to cause it.   This is also a pre-conceived notion or predudice.  This happens a lot in relationships.  My ex was a big horse stinkerhead jerk, so I use that experience to filter others.  No one is going to mess up my bed (mind) again if I can help it!  Don’t worry, if you have this problem, most people will run quickly in the other direction.  If you find yourself losing friends, this may be hiding under those sheets.

I want my own way/Self-willed

Sometimes, even those who behave correctly most of the time, get their drawers in a bunch because they want something.  They do not want to hear anything against what they have decided.  They either walk away or use control, manipulation, or drama to deflect the other person from the real issues or to make them agree that you are right.  This doesn’t work on so many levels!  We could talk about politics again here, but I want to talk about  something that has happened repeatedly with an ‘adult child’ I know.  This person has a made up mind about something.  He/she asks for advice and then starts an argument if the advice doesn’t go her way.  He/she withholds information, makes promises (that have been heard before) and stomps out of a room in frustration.  Once a person has made up his/her mind in this way, he or she will not listen to any reasons for not doing it or waiting.  Those on this cycle always have it come back to bite them, but they put on their rose-colored “I know what I know” glasses and head blindly into whatever their choice is.  {How’s that for subtle but not subtle?}  One way I have seen this is with girls who want to marry a guy that everyone else disapproves of.  They cannot see the warning signs and they do not want anyone else to point them out, even though others see the trainwreck coming.

I want my own way–NOW!/Impatience

Ice Cream Now!

Another bug-a-boo we may find under the sheets of our made-up mind involves the self-will above, but with impatience added.  The decision may not be a bad one, but the timing is not good.  They do not want to hear it because they have made up their minds that they want it and want it NOW!  So many times people miss out on the best, not because they choose wrong, but because they won’t wait.  As a Christian, I have learned that God’s timing is perfect every time.  If He says, “Wait!” I want to listen.  Wait is not the same thing as no, but many who have this buger in their mind bed see it as such.  Some things are worth waiting for, and others will show themselves after a wait to be wrong.   Illustration:  consider the youngster who wants to eat desert before dinner.  In some cases that’s not a problem, but I find that allowing my grandchild to eat dessert first, means he/she will be too full for dinner.  Over time, this could lead to malnutrition or obesity and other problems.  Dessert is not bad, but it needs to come as an extra, not as a main dish.

All of the above and more can interfere with our ability to communicate.  Check under the sheets in your mind and see if you have any bed bugs or worse lurking under there.  These bugs can keep you from hearing what others (and God) are trying to tell you.

Have you looked under the sheets of your made-up mind lately?

What did you find?

Do you prevent others from communicating yourself from hearing others because you don’t want anyone to mess up your made-up bed mind?

Can you add to the list of bug-a-boos we might find under the sheets of a made-up mind?

What do you think?

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