Random thoughts at night while in reservist.
Recently my wife asked me: “how is it that we both read the same thing, or attend the same event, and yet the insights you glean is deeper than me?
I realised that I have change my approach to any form of incoming information these days. I consciously try to interact with an open mind. The point of reading is not the agree with everything the author says, but to be open to new perspectives, ideas and approaches that I may not have considered or dismissed previously. I also try not to be too quick to dismiss an idea just because it sounds ridiculous on the first pass.
As with many things in life, an idea exists on a spectrum. It is very rarely that someone is just outright wrong about something, it is way more likely that the idea is just a suboptimal solution for a given problem. Since everyone’s situation and context is different there is almost always a completely acceptable reason for the “wrong” conclusion that someone ends up with.
When I try to distill down the thoughts and actions that I take when given new information, I think it boils down to these few things.
- Am I too proud to admit that there’s a chance I could be wrong?
- Can I see it making any sense given multiple situations?
- Do I agree with the author’s approach?
- Am I willing to step out of my comfort zone to try the approach?
For example, I recently read a book named “How to talk to anyone”, that there’s a method of eye contact known as epoxy eyes where you have your eyes completely glued onto a person to show interest. My understanding of eye contact is that I should not maintain it for long periods of time because it can be off-puting, but the author suggests that there are positive effects when done correctly.
I am open to the idea that I could be wrong about what I know of eye contact, and I can imagine it making sense when trying to court a partner. I do not know if I agree with the author’s approach, but I am willing to step out of my comfort zone to give it a shot. And then through experiencing it I am able to better judge if this bit of information has any usefulness in my life.
That’s all, just needed a place to dump my midnight thoughts.