Caffeine and curly fries – Volume 2

Caffeine and curly fries - Volume 2

This isn't exclusive to movement, fitness, or health in the physical sense but an expansion of my original post about principles. I'm not a psychologist, biochemist, astronaut or author, just an observer. For all you know I could be talking shit and none of this could make any sense, but if you read my first post you'll realise that this is the point. You should be able to take everything with a grain of salt and (critically) make your own mind up.

My idea here is that everything you see and perceive, and your reactions to such are a just reflection of your mindset. The way you perceive any piece of information - be it a song, an appearance, a movement, a taste. It's not a right or wrong, black or white reality, but just a reflection of your ability to comprehend and appreciate it. A common example of this (especially in a group setting in a gym) is 'good music'. In a group of people you know there is going to be someone who thinks a song is crap. Yet to someone else it could be their favourite song. There is no such thing as 'crap music' because everyone's interpretation of good or bad is different, and has nothing to do with the 'quality' of the song. What you see isn't necessarily what's in front of you, but your ability to comprehend it. More importantly, your reaction to it highlights your perception of normal.

This is important in a health sense because as humans we default to autopilot a lot. What's considered normal within our society shapes our sub-conscious so much that we become numb. Numb to how we should probably eat/move/sleep and all the other basic physiological functions that govern our happiness and quality of life. We all know that we should eat better, sit less, move more, but there's still something missing when connecting the dots between knowledge and practice. What's socially accecptable or 'normal' probably plays a big part.

To put it in perspective - we're in world where it's normal (common) to have chronic back pain, surgeries, joint replacements (it's like we accept/expect it's going to happen). Yet abnormal to have a fully functioning body that lets you rest in a squat or put your arms above your head. It's normal to eat cereal for breakfast because the television told you so, but abnormal to eat animals and plants unless it's the evening.

Is something really 'weird' or 'strange', or is your opinion just illuminating your level of willingness (or lack of) to challenge convention? 

Below are a few definitions that could be relevant. 

  • Perception is the organisation, identification, and interpretation of sensory information in order to represent and understand the environment. All perception involves signals in the nervous system, which in turn result from physical or chemical stimulation of the sense organs. For example, vision involves light striking the retina of the eye, smell is mediated by odor molecules, and hearing involves pressure waves. Perception is not the passive receipt of these signals, but is shaped by learning, memory, expectation, and attention.
  •  Normality (also known as normalcy) is the state of being normal. Behavior can be normal for an individual (intrapersonal normality) when it is consistent with the most common behavior for that person. Normal is also used to describe individual behavior that conforms to the most common behavior in society (known as conformity). Definitions of normality vary by person, time, place, and situation – it changes along with changing societal standards and norms. Normal behavior is often only recognised in contrast to abnormality. In its simplest form, normality is seen as good while abnormality is seen as bad. Someone being seen as "normal" or "not normal" can have social ramifications, including being included, excluded or stigmatized by larger society.
  • Open-mindedness is receptiveness to new ideas. Open-mindedness relates to the way in which people approach the views and knowledge of others, and "incorporate the beliefs that others should be free to express their views and that the value of others’ knowledge should be recognised."
  • Critical thinking is that mode of thinking — about any subject, content, or problem — in which the thinker improves the quality of his or her thinking by skillfully analyzing, assessing, and reconstructing it. Critical thinking is self-directed, self-disciplined, self-monitored, and self-corrective thinking. It presupposes assent to rigorous standards of excellence and mindful command of their use. It entails effective communication and problem-solving abilities, as well as a commitment to overcome our native egocentrism and sociocentrism. 



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