Metaphors we live byPosted: March 4, 2012
In the book ‘Metaphors we live by’ Lakoff and Johnson propose that metaphors are more than just “poetic imagination” or “rhetorical flourish”, but form the very basis by which we perceive our world.
They propose that our conceptual system, the very way that we perceive our world, is fundamentally metaphorical in nature, and that if we become aware of the metaphors of our conceptual system we can change our perception and change our vantage point.
Our ordinary language is littered with conceptual metaphors.
What do I mean?
Here is a conceptual metaphor: Time is Money.
We hear how this metaphor plays out in our language:
I don’t have time to give you.
How do you spend you time these days?
I’ve invested a lot of time in her.
I am running out of time.
How would our perception change if our conceptual metaphor for Time changed to: Time is Liquid?
I have to freeze my time for now.
I have a small reserve of time for you.
Time is flowing quickly today!
The day just evaporated.
All feels a bit different? Interesting.
In Pete’s post ‘Change your vantage point’ we are encourage to get an external change of perspective; in this post I am encouraging an internal change of perspective.
Have a bit of fun with conceptual metaphors today and start to notice how they shape your perception.