The difference between facts and the meaning we give to those facts

As humans, we are meaning making machines. We make up stories to make sense of the world around us. We give meaning to the facts that happen around us.

A fact is an objective truth. For example: the driver in that car just drove really closely to my car as they went in front of my car.

Then we add meaning or stories to the facts. “That jerk just cut me off.”

The stories we spin can spur feelings. “I’m going to show that driver that no one cuts me off” and the road rage begins.

But maybe you can attach a more neutral or positive meaning. You might tell yourself that maybe, they are rushing to the hospital to give birth, or perhaps someone is in dire need at the hospital. Your feelings and subsequent actions will follow that train of thought. You might be excited or worried for them instead of angry.

We can make the meaning to what happens around us. We can think in more neutral or positive or forgiving terms.

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