Check your sources!
Something has been messing with my state of mind lately. When I first saw the scene in this photo, I didn't see off-season milkweed, I saw a bunch of sparrows that had been impaled on sticks in some sort of freak calamity. Yikes! Fortunately I know what has been skewing my perception -- I'm deeply engrossed in the Handmaid's Tale, with its too-close-for-comfort portrayal of a brutal fundamentalist regime taking over the United States. I've been primed to see portents of doom.
Of course there is plenty of real gloom-and-doom in the world, but mistaking weeds for a scene of unnatural carnage gave me a clue that I was looking through a highly charged emotional filter.
As an intuitive energy healer, my training requires that I do personal work on my own emotional and psychological issues so they don't interfere with my perception when working with clients. I do special preparation before each session and I "check my sources" frequently to make sure there is no emotional interference.
This can be a useful practice for day-to-day interactions as well. If you are finding yourself overreacting, misreading situations, or misunderstanding other people, why not stop and take a closer look at what else might be coloring your perception? Just taking a moment to step back and notice can really make a big difference. Try asking, "What does this person or situation remind me of?" or "Where else did I have this feeling?" and see what comes up.
If you're not getting any clear insights, your rational mind is probably interfering. One way to bypass it is by free-writing to the question for a few minutes to tap into the subconscious. When you come up with an answer that resonates, test it with your own personal truth barometer, your heart. Put both hands over your heart chakra (between the breasts) and take a few deep, centering breaths into that area. Ask your heart, "Is this true?" Get to know how your body gives you a "yes" or "no" response--it could be a movement (forward/backward), a feeling (open/constricted, light/heavy), or maybe you'll hear the words yes or no.
If you would like to better understand the nature of your own personal filters and learn how to clear and balance them, an energy healing session can help.