2009.01.02 19:00 - Self-Perception

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    Threedee Shepherd was GOC, sitting in for Adelene Dawner

    How we perceive ourselves compared to how others perceive us.

    Threedee Shepherd: Hello Kirkra
    Kirkra Caerndow: Hey there!
    Threedee Shepherd: How has your New Year been so far?
    Kirkra Caerndow: It's been pretty excellent actually
    Kirkra Caerndow: Nothing world shattering, which isgood
    Threedee Shepherd: I would settle for an entire year of nothing world shattering
    Kirkra Caerndow: Same here, but it's good for things to get mixed up a bit sometimes as well
    Threedee Shepherd: mixed is ok, shattered I can leave
    Kirkra Caerndow: Well you can always fashion the pieces into creative futurist sculptures
    Threedee Shepherd: true
    Threedee Shepherd: is there anything you were going to bring up, here, tonight?
    Kirkra Caerndow: Hmmmmm.... Well it might be good to save topics when there are more than two people, but if there's no set topic we could always talk about...
    Kirkra Caerndow: How about the idea of identity and self representation and perception
    Threedee Shepherd: all three, or just one
    Kirkra Caerndow: Well, all three sort of tie eachother together. Its an issue of how people percieve themselves and how they are percieved by others. I'm not sure if it ties very closely to play as being, but its an interesting topic all the same, especially with the way that the internet and technology work now
    Threedee Shepherd: It fits PaB just fine.
    Threedee Shepherd: I would start by saying that it is very likely that others see us differently than we see/imagine ourselves, to a significant extent.
    Threedee Shepherd: Let, alone, the idea of Internet/SL/Facebook identities
    Kirkra Caerndow: Well that's a sure thing, especially since so much of interation is based around who we interact with. We might seem like completely different people depending on who you ask
    Threedee Shepherd: True, although if one is a relatively stable person, the overall descriptions of personalitry type will probably be similar. It's rare to be both an introvert and extrovert .
    Kirkra Caerndow: That's true, but the subtle mannerisms can often define who you are to different people
    Threedee Shepherd: Agreed, and you react to/interact with/respond to each person in ways that depend on them
    stevenaia Michinaga: hello, Happy New Year
    Threedee Shepherd: Hi Steve, just how much did your AV drink at the party?
    Kirkra Caerndow: He seems to be a bit too happy, hah
    stevenaia Michinaga: the party continiues
    stevenaia Michinaga: Hello Kirkra
    stevenaia Michinaga: still rezzing
    Kirkra Caerndow: Anyways... at the same time, other people tailor their reactions to you. You could know someone for a decade and still not really know who they are.
    Threedee Shepherd: Steve we just started discussing: Its an issue of how people percieve themselves and how they are percieved by others. I'm not sure if it ties very closely to play as being, but its an interesting topic all the same, especially with the way that the internet and technology work now, which Kirkra proposed
    setting. I highly doubt that any of "us" look much like we do in reality
    Threedee Shepherd: I think that is a different case--an acquaintence--even at daily work--can be someone you don't deeply know.
    stevenaia Michinaga: I rely heavilly on people perception of me, it takes the weight off of me to figure out who I think I am, whish to me is fairly meanless to me, or anyone else, but perhaps this is not the topic at hanf..
    stevenaia Michinaga: hand
    stevenaia Michinaga: if that makes sence, Hi Rajah
    Threedee Shepherd: it isa, Steve. Interestingly, Kirkra, my "SL Business AV" looks somewhat like me, intentionally
    Rajah Yalin: hi Steven, Threedee, and Kirka
    Threedee Shepherd: Hello Rajah, have you been to a PaB discussion before?
    Kirkra Caerndow: Hello there!
    stevenaia Michinaga: and mine looks like what someone thought I should look like
    Rajah Yalin: yes I have, sorry the long standing - I'd gotten up for a minute to get tea
    Threedee Shepherd: np
    Threedee Shepherd: we are discussing the relationships between the way we perceive ourselves and how other perceive us
    stevenaia Michinaga: assumming you are ammenable to being perceived as you are, it's quite comfortable to listen to what people see in you,
    stevenaia Michinaga: in the best of reality you are and can accept what others see in you
    Threedee Shepherd: Yes. And, in general people seem to tune their emotional state, group position and the like, whenever we are in groups of a few.
    Threedee Shepherd: in RL, I am talking about
    Kirkra Caerndow: Even when you dont want to act that way, it's so easy to fall into the position defined by your group... Even easier to make fast judgements on people based on subtle traits
    Rajah Yalin: I was once told to be watchful of those who bring only praise - not because what they isn't true, but because you might start beleiving and act differently
    Threedee Shepherd: Yes, Kirkra, that seems to be built into the parts of our brain that deal with social things.
    stevenaia Michinaga: wonders what is the point of "defining yourself" other than what you are , sice peopel inevitably see you for what you are, not what you want to be seen as
    Threedee Shepherd: Or, they know you are "putting on an act", even if they don't know you otherwise
    stevenaia Michinaga: yes
    Kirkra Caerndow: I dont think that it's possible for people to really know who you are, especially since people by nature dont think of themselves as who they really are
    stevenaia Michinaga: but humble person will not change due to praise
    stevenaia Michinaga: Rajah
    Threedee Shepherd: Let me bring up a different pooint of view on this question, as follows
    Kirkra Caerndow: Even people who realize their flaws cannot hope to express them perfectly to others, it's a limitation of communication
    Threedee Shepherd: "Learned Helplessness" is when you come to believe you are incapable because others constantly put you down, tell you so, prevent your actions, etc.
    Threedee Shepherd: Such I person will say: "Gee, I can't do anything, I'm useless and incompetant." and fully believes that and acts accordingly.
    stevenaia Michinaga: but a centered person will remain centered, if they have not reached that point, then yes what you say is certainly possible and should change the enviroment before it gets to that point
    stevenaia Michinaga: (one solution)
    Threedee Shepherd: Yes, I was wondering how to answer the question, "Who/what is that person really?"
    Kirkra Caerndow: The thing is... I dont think its possible for people to truly understand themselves.
    stevenaia Michinaga: or to remove the abusers who probably are threatened by this individual
    stevenaia Michinaga: there certainly are toxic groups or workplaces that prevent people from thiving,
    Threedee Shepherd: Yes, Kirkra, but we accomplish reasonably useful approximations--or we don't survive. We "satisfice" in a term Norton Simon invented (I think it was him).
    stevenaia Michinaga: I agree Kirkra
    Kirkra Caerndow: Thats part of the problem with communicating with other people...
    Kirkra Caerndow: How can other people understand us if we can't even understand ourselves!
    Threedee Shepherd: Steve, all that is true. I am going in a different direction--who you are can be strongly determined by those around you.
    accept their definition of you
    stevenaia Michinaga: *then
    Threedee Shepherd: Well, Kirkra, the ultimate case of that is the story of the Tower of Babel. But, we seem to accomplish much, however ambiguous our common language is.
    Kirkra Caerndow: Well that's true certainly. And I don't think that we're really hindered by the lack of understanding, it's just an interesting footnote
    parents. Some parents are incompetent as child-raisers.
    stevenaia Michinaga: thre are certain things you know about yourself, then thre are the things that have impact on others , which define you in their eyes
    Threedee Shepherd: mmhmm
    stevenaia Michinaga: you know when you tell the truth.. and someone calls you a lier, for instance and are wrong....
    stevenaia Michinaga: then there are thigns that have an impact on others, which are inately you... an act of kindness, for instance, which shapes the way you are perceived
    Threedee Shepherd: Steve, an interesting tangent, perhaps, is how fervently another person wants to define you--for themselves--pidgeonhole and stereotype you, inorder to feel safe and in control.
    Threedee Shepherd: That seems to be almost the first thing that happens when people meet
    stevenaia Michinaga: (then there are all those things that may not be so clear cut)
    stevenaia Michinaga: yes Three, but eventually won't those definitions be redefined with time around you
    Threedee Shepherd: perhaps
    stevenaia Michinaga: if they are incorrect
    Threedee Shepherd: We make a great deal about the idea of "first impressions"
    Kirkra Caerndow: Well sometimes it's not even a first impression if we hear about someone beforehand
    Threedee Shepherd: true, there are all those experiments with teachers who are or are not told about the past records ofd their students, and who act differently
    stevenaia Michinaga: or those stories of treating students "differently" and they thrive, telling them what they are is having the baility to succeed, I suspect they always ahd that ability, it was just "supressed by the group"
    Kirkra Caerndow: One thing that is interesting to try... And I know this seems manipulative, but is to try creating some kind of subtle mannerism that youdont normally have on purpose
    Kirkra Caerndow: It's strange how similar it is to the role of teacher and student even if it's not really knowledge
    Kirkra Caerndow: You can sometimes notice people using that same mannerism even if you've never spoken to them before, just because they picked it up from people that you communicated it to
    Threedee Shepherd: Well, eventually, you "will" normally have it
    Threedee Shepherd: There is still another point. Most of us are "social primates" as opposed to hermits. Thus, we tailor our "appearance" to ways that we want to be perceived by the others.
    Kirkra Caerndow: And even the wisest hermit probably appears mysterious because he wants to :b
    Threedee Shepherd: true
    Threedee Shepherd: Kirkra, you brought up this topic, has it gone directions that you thought it might?
    Kirkra Caerndow: Not exactly! But any direction of discussion is interesting to me
    Threedee Shepherd: Oh, what else do you want to say about it, then?
    Kirkra Caerndow: Well, let me think...
    stevenaia Michinaga: perhaps true to yourself is not defining yourself but Being yourself
    Kirkra Caerndow: In addition to the idea of social perceptions through personality, we have other things... Dress and attire for instance
    Threedee Shepherd: Yes Steve
    Kirkra Caerndow: Not something that is natural by any means, but it still lends so much to our appearance and perception... Just like these avatars in second life
    Threedee Shepherd: Another night we could discuss, what does it mean to just be yourself, or how is that done?
    Kirkra Caerndow: A man might be a brilliant mathematician and yet if he doesnt shave for three months and wears tattered clothing you might toss him change if he was sitting on a bench
    Threedee Shepherd chuckles
    stevenaia Michinaga: I ahve this strange (for em) habit of only dressing up when I am with my "professional group" suit coat and the like
    stevenaia Michinaga: rarely do that otherwise
    Threedee Shepherd: I did the same, Steve. Now, I don't even do that unless the occasion is extremely formal.
    stevenaia Michinaga: talk about conditioning..three
    stevenaia Michinaga: I mean...my conditioning
    Threedee Shepherd: yes
    stevenaia Michinaga: but i do not feel I am myself... at least outwardly
    Threedee Shepherd: Imagine a politician on the floor of the Senate, in a tee shirt
    Threedee Shepherd: I relate to that not feel like yourself thing.
    Threedee Shepherd: I wonder how often we just get dressed versus how often we go in a costume?
    stevenaia Michinaga: some more than others
    stevenaia Michinaga: but I don;t think it will matter for that mathematician
    Threedee Shepherd: Kirkra, regarding our appearances here in SL. I have been coming to PaB for so long as this Lion Av, that I would feel strange coming in my human AV form.
    stevenaia Michinaga: were you always a raven, kirkra?
    Kirkra Caerndow: Oh in second life? Almost always
    Threedee Shepherd: Perhaps a last point. I taught a course oon mind, brain and being for many years. One question I always brought up for discussion was this
    Threedee Shepherd: if you take a therapeutic psychoactive drug, like Prozac, which is the "real" you, the personality on or off the drug?
    Threedee Shepherd: Well, given the "rousing" response, perhaps that is a topic for another night?
    stevenaia Michinaga: both
    stevenaia Michinaga: hehe
    Threedee Shepherd: of course
    Threedee Shepherd: but the students did not see it that way, usually
    stevenaia Michinaga: well thanke for the discussion, one I have thought about a bit, hope it was helpful to Kirkra
    Threedee Shepherd: wb Kirkra
    Kirkra Caerndow: Thanks! A bit of a hiccup there
    Threedee Shepherd: So, I'm keeping the log in Adelene's stead, tonight and I need to say goodnight, and thanks for the discussion.
    Kirkra Caerndow: And thank you as well!
    stevenaia Michinaga: thanks three, she hit the road?
    stevenaia Michinaga: on her way south?
    Threedee Shepherd: Not quite yet--it's a Looong story and I will leave it for her to tell ^.^
    stevenaia Michinaga: ok, night three
    Threedee Shepherd: She is traveling Thursday
    Threedee Shepherd: goodnight to you both :)

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