#Opinions March 25


Coach4aday is a daily blog that began in 2014. The posts are mostly shared ideas to help people grow and learn. You can follow the blog with one of the like buttons found on top left of Coach4aday website

In 2020 some Coach4aday posts will feature lessons learned by completing, planning, and experiencing 30 day challenges. The challenges include physical, mental, spiritual, and emotional.

Opinions

In the past month I have encountered some strong OPINIONS that were opposite of mine. I had to pause and reflect on how those different views could alter my state of mind.

What I am getting ready to write in the next couple of sentences is not something I am personally proud of. With self reflection and lots of reading I realize I have lots of flaws. One I am working hard to eliminate is how I react to different OPINIONS.

In the past I realize that mentally I was dismissing or devaluing anyone who had a different OPINION than mine. I wasn’t ugly about it but my internal voice would find flaws with the other person and that meant I did not need to value that OPINION.

In essence every time I encountered a different OPINION I created a narrative where I was smarter, more knowledgeable, or had superior morals than the other person. I was building myself up by devaluing the others who held a different OPINION. Not a proud confession but a true one.

What I have discovered thru reading and life experiences is there is a better approach. CORID-19 has sure given me some practice over the past month.

I realize that there is a psychological condition called “Cognitive Dissonance”. As part of this condition there exist a bias. That bias is known as “Confirmation Bias”.

James Clear has written a great article titled 5 Common Mental Errors That Sway You From Making Good Decisions

I am not a psychologist or well versed in counseling but I have come to accept that for me to grow I need to deal with different OPINIONS to make the best decisions. I can’t deal with those differences using my past practices

What Confirmation Bias does is the following. We form an OPINION, we embrace information that confirms that OPINION while ignoring, or rejecting, information that casts doubt on it. It is not easy to overcome. We all want information that validates our OPINION. I will say it again this is not easy. It is humbling.

I now approach each OPINION that is different than mine with the mindset what can I learn from this person. Some OPINIONS especially those that are delivered to devalue and dismiss me are hard to embrace. The delivery and tone of opinions can set us off. Learning to understand what sets us off has becomes a resource. Let me be clear I am still learning how to navigate these waters. Please don’t read this post looking for expertise I am just beginning to learn.

I have come to accept that learning anything new always presents stumbling blocks especially in the beginning. Listening to differing OPINIONS without dismissing and devaluing immediately makes me vulnerable because there is a risk I am wrong. It is especially hard when an OPINION is delivered as an attack. I have come to accept that if I work at it I can disagree without having to resort to me becoming narrow-minded. How I get there involves pursuing a path of self-awareness.

These past few weeks like all of us I have listened to many opinions. Admitting my opinion may be wrong makes me vulnerable. Choosing to become vulnerable is how I can grow. That is my OPINION.

One comment

  1. Great post! People learn by having their opinions challenged — and really listening.

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