My partner does the cooking at our house, as my kitchen skills involve little more finesse than the ability to open cans. [Seriously, he’s a magician in the kitchen! Here are some of his recipes.]
A typical lunch around here consists of a variety of chopped fresh vegetables, microwaved to just past the point of al dente, with possibly a little whole wheat pasta thrown in.
For years, I’d be presented with my bowl of veggies and handed a spoon, then I would quietly trade the spoon for a fork. I mean, I’m an adult: I eat with a fork! And then I would always struggle with the last bits of my food that would’ve been much easier to eat with a spoon.
One day as I was switching cutlery, I thought to myself with a hint of indignant pride, “Well, of course I can’t eat this with a spoon. Only children eat with a spoon, and I’m an adult.”
Then I heard myself and stopped.
That’s right: For years I was making myself eat this particularly spoon-worthy dish with a fork because when I was a child I’d either been told or I had told myself that only the big kids can eat with forks, and thus only children eat with spoons.
Subliminal programming revealed is subliminal programming destroyed! I put the fork back in the drawer and picked up a spoon, and it’s been spoons (for this dish, anyway) ever since.
The takeaway here is that even the smallest messaging unconsciously shapes a person. What are the other subconscious influences in my life? And what subconscious influences might I be unintentionally programming into the lives of those around me?
Now any time I catch myself jumping to a conclusion, I say to myself: “I can eat with a spoon!” Then I judge anew if I agree with the reasoning behind my conclusion.
I just need to get better at catching myself at those jumps.
Oh, this is great!! If only we all took time regularly to consider how we create the maps that we use to navigate life.
Here’s to stepping off the map and picking up the spoon!