Saturday, July 15, 2006

Perception: Your Point of View Verses Mine

After cruising a lot of blogs, I've noticed something that I wasn't really aware of. Ever notice that after you buy that new car, you seem to spot a lot of them on the highway, whereas before the purchase you didn't? The thing that I noticed was, the fact that our minds are sharpened to recognize stimulus that we accept into the model of our perceived world.

The real estate bubble bloggers, see the real estate market falling off of a cliff. The real estate agent sees a return to a more normal market. It's not really a matter of who is right, but rather one of timing. Real Estate has been trying to fall off of that cliff for several years, and yet some real estate agents are making a decent living.

I do believe in the example I have cited with real estate, it will fall off a cliff. The "when" part I am not sure about. What needs to be pointed out is that what you expect to happen, colors how you perceive the markets. It's kind of like the cartoon of two men on a very small island. One puts oar locks to the left and right and puts in two oars and starts to row to the west, the other guy on the island throws his hands up and says "you're rowing the wrong way!"

What needs to be realized is that what we want or expect to see, is far more observable than that what we care little about. Captain Ahab harpooning the great white whale nailed the whale, but the rope was wrapped around his leg--he didn't see it coming.

Our faulty perception of the world can harm us. Real estate could be collapsing and you laugh at the guy that looses his house. With 100% financing, don't laugh at him he's home free. It's the bank that gets hung. And when you trace it back far enough; your retirement fund probably took the big hit.

My point is this, what you want to see, you will be able to see, only because your mind is selective. It will notice what you are more receptive to. Therefore my premise: what you want to perceive, you will find a way to perceive, not because it is actual, but rather because it is expected by you to be that way.

If you accept this theory, then you might just question more critically your observations of the world about you. Reality for the individual is all about perceived perception. It is a real reality to each individual. To the group, it may not be. Hence the reality, "I could be wrong!"

It sure feels nice not to have to be right all of the time!


Anonymous said...

so i was thinking about perception...

people would say "oh, it's different this time. NO housing bubble!"....

but the same people would say "oh the mother nature is always the same. we will be just fine. NO cliimate problems!"....

btw: the anonymous word verification this time for me is "ifkkqou"... um... try reading that one... making' me blush

then again, that's my perception...

Jim in San Marcos said...

I just came back from Las Vegas.

My perception driving there, "you're going to win."

My reality driving back--"it didn't happen."

Perception is a very personal and individual concept.

Sorry about the anonymous word verification thingie. They haven't built a computer that can blush yet. --I have a rough time just typing the letters in right!

We all go to Vegas to win, but its the "non winners" as a group, that built that city.