Studies have shown that the way we approach the world--our goals, our interests, our motivations--literally changes how we see it. Our brains get more information from the world than our conscious awareness can handle, so they pick and choose what information to give us. (Brains can be really annoying that way.)
That means that if we are primarily concerned about ourselves and our own interests, we will see the world through a self-centered lens. We will see others only in terms of how they can help or hinder us, as if they were nothing more than objects. We will see what is annoying about them, or how they can be manipulated, etc.
But if we are concerned about others (what The Arbinger Institute calls an "outward mindset") then we will see them in a more accurate, more complete and honest way. We will see them as they are and not just objectified for our own purposes. If the brain knows we value others, then it will notice what is valuable about them.
Seeing people as people means letting in, through the brain's filters, what is true and honest and inspiring about others. And it means becoming aware of our own effect on others--how our previous blindness and inward mindset was cruel to them. It means staying open to seeing our own mistakes, which the brain does not like to do. So it takes effort and reminding and regular reflection on how we are a problem for others.
That's what this blog is for. To provide a regular reminder that other people are people, that they have greatness if we look for it, and to keep ourselves morally humble and honest.
This is the only way to save relationships, become better leaders, and create personal growth. Not by focusing inward on fixing ourselves, but by focusing on others. Seeing people as people isn't just about feeling warm fuzzies: it's soft like a brick.
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