The Space Between Minds

In your mind are truths. There are also many falsehoods and uncertainties, and you’ve got to sift out the truths in order to communicate them. This is an imperfect process.

Then, you have to convert those truths which you’ve found into words, written or spoken. Those words must carry the truth of your mind, but you won’t always know the right words or exactly how to put them together, nor be able to do so flawlessly. So this too is an imperfect process.

Then other people need to perceive those words. People’s perceptions are notoriously biased, applying filters to all information based on mood, heuristics, or even simple error. So the process of another person’s interpreting your words which carry your truths is (you guessed it) imperfect.

Then that person’s brain has to take that perception and find a place for it within their own mental model of the universe. Along the way, it may be bent or reshaped in any number of ways in order to fit in with the other truths (not to mention falsehoods and uncertainties) in their own mind. So converting your truth from their perception to their memory is of course very imperfect.

Lastly, in order for your attempt at communication to have been truly considered successful, the person receiving your truth must convert this new information into action – they must walk differently in the world based on what they’ve learned. The action they choose will be based on so many factors that your initial intent probably accounts for less than a percent of what they actually do; thus, this is as imperfect a process as you can imagine.

And yet, people get frustrated when they say something and the other person doesn’t immediately react perfectly.

Look at the journey your ideas must take! And when the other person doesn’t dance instantly like a puppet on the string of what we believe to be truth, we blame them. As if their actions had only one true purpose: to annoy us.

Look, you can’t build a bridge across a river by throwing bricks at the other side. It’s a process, and it’s a very difficult one. Respect it enough to improve it. Work diligently, work with a plan, and do not ever expect perfection – only improvement.

This is the truth of my mind. I wonder what it looks like by the time it reaches yours?

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