Perception, Reality & The 5 R’s


As we go about our regular workdays, we strive to meet all of our daily tasks — both big and small. Some days are better than others. But how much of it is based on our perception? The answer is this:  All of it.

Here’s an example. Many years ago, I would get up early in the morning to watch an aerobics workout tape. It wasn’t Jane Fonda, but it was a Jane Fonda wannabe. The woman on the videotape was recorded, so she had the same words, the same expressions, and the same workouts day after day after day. But depending on my mood, I perceived her as either a friendly helpmate or a bitch of a taskmaster. Her recording was the same, so her presentation was constant. But my mood colored my perception of her. Therefore, my perception was my reality.



Looking at our businesses, we are susceptible to everyone having their own perception of reality. We can work on a project and devote extra time and care to it so it’s perfect. To some, their perception is that we are detail-oriented and that is a positive thing. To others, we may appear too slow — especially if they are in a hurry and they’re running behind schedule — which is perceived as a bad thing.

So, who wins? In most cases, no one is a winner or a loser. Our perception is our reality, and not everyone is going to come to an agreement. Here’s an example. I am planning a trip to visit friends and family in Florida this November. My best friend and I are planning on meeting with an old high school friend of ours. We were on Facebook Messenger, stating what kinds of food we prefer.

My best friend wrote, “I’m up for anything but sushi. Jen made me eat raw squid once and I still have not forgiven her for that!!!”

To which I replied, “I did? I don’t remember that. Sorry!!!”

Because I grew up as a picky eater, I can’t imagine that I would force anyone to eat something they didn’t like. But the way my best friend sees it, I forced her to eat raw squid. Yikes! Did I really do that? I felt bad for doing that, and thankfully she wrote back, “Love you anyway.”

How many times have we thought we did a good job and one of our customers didn’t agree with our assessment? Heck, that happened to me recently. I’m humming along, thinking I’m kicking butt, when a billing problem arises. Since I’m not handling the bookkeeping, I freak out because 1) I’m not in full control of the situation and 2) if my client is freaked out and upset, I become freaked out and upset. My client’s perception of reality is that I’m doing a poor job handling his bills, and I cannot disagree with him. I want it fixed, too!

So, what do we do when the people we love and serve don’t share the same perception as us regarding what happened? How do we make amends?

It reminds me of a workshop I once taught about the 5 R’s.

The 5 R’s are Rapport, Resistance, Resentment, Reconciliation, and Revenge.

When we first meet someone, we build Rapport. This is the stage where we are getting to know each other and establishing trust in our relationship.

As we get to know each other better, we may meet some Resistance. We find resistance when someone forces us to eat raw squid against our will, or even when we establish healthy boundaries. Resistance isn’t a bad thing in itself, but if we gather up too much resistance, then we move to…

Resentment. Resentment is when we are getting more upset with each other and our desire to be in the same room decreases. If resentment builds and festers, we have two choices:


  1. We can either seek Revenge, where we lash out with harsh words, write bad one-star reviews, or make a scene. Once a relationship has reached the revenge stage, it’s over. Anyone who has been through a nasty divorce knows what revenge feels like.
  2. Or we can seek Reconciliation. The first step towards reconciliation is to Report With Love to that person. Let them know that you are feeling some resentment building up and you want to address it in order to clear the air. Reporting with love is the healing that needs to take place for reconciliation to happen.

So, here’s what you need to do if you find that your clients, friends, or loved ones are building up some resistance and resentment towards you:  Report with love and aim towards reconciliation. Otherwise, revenge will extoll too high a price in the form of negative energy and it will ruin your relationships.

Therefore, here’s what the 5 R’s SHOULD look like:  Rapport, Resistance, Resentment, Report With Love, Reconciliation.

Since I’m the person who is teaching this lesson, I’d like to be the first to “walk the walk and talk the talk” to seek reconciliation.

Hello, my friend. If I have disappointed you in any way, I would love the opportunity to talk with you and set things right. I encourage you to report with love any issues on your heart. Allow me to see what your perception of our reality is so we can clear out any resentment. My goal is to do everything I can to make our relationship a happy one. I am your sister in support and abundance, and you are adored.

I hope this lesson inspires you to share the 5 R’s with your team, your loved ones, your customers, your vendors, and your community. I’ll be cheering you on as you build stronger, healthier, and happier relationships with everyone in your life. 🙂

I hope you found this lesson of the 5 R’s helpful.

To your success!

Jennifer Filzen

Your Favorite Rock Star Marketer

Owner of Rock Star Marketing

Cell:  408-833-9868

Email:  [email protected]