Perception is NOT reality.

You know it wasn’t until I began working for my current employer that I heard the phrase, “perception is reality”.  I work in customer service, to be more specific I am a debt collector so I spend my days during the week contacting people about their unpaid accounts that are in collections. Sounds fun right?

Often to pass time we talk, sing, and play games because as you could have guessed there are so many people looking to hand over their  money on accounts they have long forgotten and/or don’t care about. But still we do our jobs of course.

Managers will often walk by and inquire if were working because they’ll overhear talking and laughter (you might as well say happiness) and its not deemed productive.  I had such an encounter.

Perception is reality and you don’t want to appear as though you are not focused.”

Now at the time I completely understood that we were at work and from a business perspective its not but I was taken back by the statement. I turned and stated that it wasn’t true. That perceiving something a particular way doesn’t mean its factual. How did she know we weren’t discussing the job. How can you decide something based solely on what you see or hear? It grew quiet and she stated just because I didn’t believe in it didn’t make it untrue.

I simply shrugged my shoulders and turned around not wanting to appear “insubordinate” and stayed in deep thought the rest of the day.

Perception per the dictionary is defined as a way of regarding, understanding, or interpreting something; a mental impression.

A mental impression.

But I’m sure we all can agree that our perception is not always an accurate depiction of reality. In fact in many instances we are incorrect about the things we form opinions on and I am speaking from my own experience.

I am very quick to decide I don’t like something or someone based solely on what I overlook and see, and I know I’m not alone. We judge and base our actions prematurely and it comes back to bite us. Because things are not all as they seem.

I don’t want to embrace such a flawed concept.


As Jim Brown says,

“I’m not interested in trying to work on people’s perceptions. I am who I am, and if you don’t take the time to learn about that, then your perception is going to be your problem.”


Need I say more?






3 thoughts on “Perception is NOT reality.

  1. Maybe everyone’s perception of you isn’t reality, but your perception of yourself probably is.
    But while we’re on that, what do you think is reality then, really?
    I think what the phrase really means is that people’s perception of you is the only thing that matters because no matter what the reality is, if they think you’re not being productive, you do get fired, whether that was reality or not. And not having a job is definitely real.
    It’s not as much”‘perception is reality” as “perceptions invade reality”
    I would love to know your thoughts on that!
    Great post, Alexia! ❤
    Looking forward to reading more from you…

    • I think the meaning of what reality is depends on who you are speaking to, because we all have an experience while we are on this earth and it varies from each person and can be influenced by so many factors such as being rich or poor and having parents to being an orphan. Such things affect our outlook which is how I think platitudes like “Perception is reality” come about.

      A platitude that is just problematic to me. Your perception of things can be so flawed, and never should be the only thing that matters if it isn’t the truth. Someone could appear unproductive and be just the opposite. We should deal in what is factual and not let our own opinions of things determine particular outcomes and I know its easy to say, as humans I think we naturally (despite what job assessments want us to say) judge and believe the worst in people first because its easy. I’ve done it and I try not to because its doesn’t give people a chance or myself.

      And I like “perception invades reality” I could agree with that one so much more.

      Thank you for commenting, I’m glad you liked my post! I took some time to read through much of your work and truly consider you commenting like the best thing ever haha.


      • Exactly, it’s so much easier to just make an assessment based on first-impressions rather than see a conversation through and then judge
        And yes, I’ve been there so many times too, judging people in my mind before I meet them but I’m trying to keep my heart open
        That would a great world to live in, wouldn’t it? No judgement, no first impressions, no pressure… I hope we get there someday.

        You have no idea how much it means to me that you read my posts, so thank you for that ❤
        Looking forward to reading your next piece!

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