Life Lessons

Change the Narratives in Your Mind

Illustration of a man changing the workings of the human mind
Vecteezy

I recently watched an interesting video about the narratives we constantly make up in our minds about individuals and occurrences. These narratives or stories are coloured by our experiences and how we perceive these experiences. Our prejudices also have a part to play.

Imagine a scenario where you have been hospitalised and missed out on school work. When your best friend does not share her notes with you, you give her a lot of leeway. You mentally excuse her: “She is acting out of character. Must be her bad day, after all.” But when another classmate refuses to share her notes, you think: “Selfish girl! What more can you expect from her type?” You have attributed two different reasons for the same behaviour.

We tend to use a single narrative thought process. We use it even for ourselves. I am absent-minded and often misplace things. My daughter, Minal, asked me to buy her a kurta and suggested I keep the bill in case she wanted to exchange it. After my purchase, I focused and kept the bill in the carry bag. Minal wanted to exchange it, and said it was not in the carry bag with the garment. Being aware of my absent-mindedness, I emptied my purse, but there was no bill. I once again looked into the carry bag and found it.

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Monica Fernandes is a freelance writer from Mumbai for whom writing is a satisfying hobby. She writes for several magazines including The Teenager Today. She has authored a book for teenagers entitled Towards A Fuller Life published by Better Yourself Books.

Monica Fernandes

Monica Fernandes is a freelance writer from Mumbai for whom writing is a satisfying hobby. She writes for several magazines including The Teenager Today. She has authored a book for teenagers entitled Towards A Fuller Life published by Better Yourself Books.