What You See Is What You Get – or Is It?
© 2015 Kebba Buckley Button, MS, OM. World Rights Reserved.
We often hear, “What you see is what you get!” or even the shorthand initials, WYSIWYG. Sometimes we hear a person say proudly that when you deal with him/her, what you see is what you get. Sometimes we receive an impression, we believe that is truth, and then we are very disappointed to discover the truth under the appearance. Who has never hired someone and been disappointed in the services provided?
As writers, we often deal with the appearance versus the truth. Sometimes we use a secret truth to be revealed as the climactic device in a novel. The entire premise of a news story may be secret information that differed from the appearance of a situation: a secret life, a hidden murder, or millions of dollars that have gone missing.
In our relationships, we often have opportunities to see that what we thought was true was not.
- A neighbor I thought was warm and wise and real turned out to be the godmother of a crime family.
- In my grad school days, my landlady concluded that I was a prostitute, because two different men drove me away in the mornings. She didn’t know they were grad school colleagues who had just picked me up to take me to class. She commented, “And I no charge you extra rent!”
- A man I saw being arrested in the Home Depot parking lot kept yelling loudly that he was being hurt.If we had observed this scene only from the moment he started yelling, we might have thought it was true.We saw no abuse, so it appeared he might have been trying to get someone to video the scene, without the peaceful and courteous beginning.
- For a conference event, my speaker shepherd somehow switched into helping with registration instead of helping me. She had told me weeks before that she had signed up to be my speaker shepherd, which gave her free registration for my day-long class. Yet the day of the event, she appeared quite offended when I found her and asked for her help. She loudly called out, “I KNOW MY JOB!” Playing to the people in the lobby, she tried to make me out to be an abuser. When she finally arrived at the room for my presentation, she said my attitude had been NOTICED by event management. Several people thought I must have been very rude to her for her to behave that way.
Have you ever been damaged by people drawing wrong conclusions about you? In the cases of my landlady and the event people thinking about me judgmentally, yes, I was very hurt at the time. And I wondered if I would be damaged by their thoughts about me. As a person of faith, however, I was comforted that ultimately, only Divine opinion matters.
Man looks at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.
— 1 Samuel 16:7
What these observers all thought they saw was far from the truth. Are you seeing what it appears you are seeing? Take your time before drawing conclusions. And make notes on these characters and sequences to use in your upcoming books! That’s Upbeat Living!
Kebba Buckley Button is a stress management expert and award-winning author. She also is an ordained minister and has a natural healing practice. Among her books are: Discover The Secret Energized You, and Peace Within: Your Peaceful Inner Core, second edition. Her newest book is Sacred Meditation: Embracing the Divine, available through her office. Just email SacredMeditation@kebba.com.