A problem of self-interpretation

by Neil

People often misinterpret themselves. I think I’m angry, but actually I’m hungry; I think I have a justified, rational distaste for someone, but actually I’m jealous of them; I think it’s very urgent that I clean my room, but I’m actually just avoiding another task. You know how it goes. (Hazard has some great examples here, too.)

Sometimes, I realize that I’ve misinterpreted myself. Someone else asks me, are you sure you just objectively dislike that person? Because it seems personal.” Sometimes, this alternate explanation — often a less flattering explanation — rings true. Sometimes it doesn’t.

But ringing true” is also a feeling. How can I know I’ve interpreted that correctly?