The sentence “the map is not the territory” comes from the creator of general semantics, Alfred Korzybski. The map corresponds to our representation of the world, and the territory is the world as it really is. Each individual constructs his own view of the world and, therefore, has his own representation of the world. There is no single map of the world.
Relational conflicts and most of our fears often arise from the confusion we make between the map and the territory. Our representation of reality corresponds to “our map of the world” or at least to the vision that we have of it. The principle of NLP (Neuro Linguistic Programming) indicates that each person has its own worldview, and therefore it is different from one person to another. There is only one territory but an infinity of maps.
Our world map is unique because it is made up of many personal filters coming from our education, our values, our experiences, our beliefs … We often think that the vision of the world that we have corresponds to the one of our interlocutors: it is a confusion between the map and the territory. We are then convinced that we understand the person, when we do not.
NLP (Neuro Linguistic Programming) allows you to notice this mistake and offers you the possibility of communicating better with others.
Our world map influences our decisions, our perceptions and often when it is disempowering, it limits us. This mental map gives a partial and often inaccurate representation of the territory. This internal mental map is fed by our sensory perception (Vision, Audition, Kinesthesia, Smell, Gustatory) of the outside world.
We perceive more than two billion pieces of information per second. Our consciousness is able to process less than ten pieces of information in the same period of time. It is therefore obvious that we filter the vast majority of information that we receive and perceive. These filters are developed from professional and personal experiences, values, beliefs.
Our perception is therefore totally subjective. It depends on the representation we have of reality but not of reality itself. In short, there is no such thing as a right or a bad map, but you have to be aware that everyone has their own map of reality. What is true for one is not true for the other because each individual is different. The only near-truth is that both are probably right! Good basis for learning to respect the model of the other’s world.