Hari's Corner

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Evolve your thinking

Filed under: Life and Leisure by Hari
Posted on Sun, Oct 7, 2007 at 19:43 IST (last updated: Wed, Jul 16, 2008 @ 21:12 IST)

One of the things I notice in a lot of people's behaviour is the fear of expressing a straight opinion without a lot of "ifs", "buts" or "ands". Another is the fear to contradict oneself after expressing a definitive opinion or viewpoint on an issue or taking a decision on a matter.

Without doubt, these two tendencies are the biggest impediments to evolving in one's thinking, one's attitude and ultimate one's life as a whole. Let me explain.

First, it is important to realize that these two tendencies are inter-related. A lot of people hesitate to express their views openly. Even in communication we see this in everyday life. People cannot say "No" to your face straight even if they disagree or cannot say "yes". They put you off in one way or the other and either communicate indirectly or not at all. A simple question will not bring out a straight "yes" or "no" answer. It's because they fear to commit themselves either way. It's not just on the big issues either. It's the minor, insignificant ones as well. I must admit that I'm guilty of this as well on some issues. I cannot say otherwise because that would be cheating myself. But a lot of people seem to think this is diplomacy at it's best. Forget it! Diplomacy is not the equivalent of hedging. It means communicating in a manner that is appropriate and in keeping with a certain situation. It doesn't mean hiding behind a cloak of indecision and covering it up with a lot of words.

The second problem that people seem to have is in acknowledging that a particular position/opinion or viewpoint that they've expressed in the past might be wrong. They see it as a sign of weakness to admit openly to a mistake in judgement. They fail to realize that a certain perspective might have been clouded by circumstances and that a change in circumstances might affect the perspective and possibly lead to a different conclusion. Unfortunately, this kind of stubbornness in thinking is worse than indecision in a way. It is failure to acknowledge a problem or a mistake. It is clouded thinking further confused by a static mind.

How many people communicate in a certain manner and never improve themselves (or even acknowledge that there is a problem in their manner/attitude)! How many people stick to a stand that they've stuck to for years and even forget the reasoning behind that stand! How many people continue sitting on the fence, not because of honest introspection, but because their mind fears reality!

I won't bore you further with this. But I just want to say one thing in relation to this issue to my blogging friends: never fear to contradict yourself. I don't say change your stance every single day because that would indeed border on the ridiculous, but don't think that it's necessary to defend a change of stance. Don't think that because you said such-and-such two or three years ago (and it can be found on your blog and held against you) that you cannot express a totally different opinion now. Don't tie your own hands by clinging on to useless ideas and thoughts or values you've found that you can safely discard in the rubbish bin of your past. In short, evolve your thinking and evolve yourself. If somebody else calls you out on your contradictions, just remember that it's a closed mind trying to judge a constantly evolving mind. ;)

If you've read this fully, my apologies for the lecture (blame the Papa Hari University of Advanced Thinking and Logic). Regular programming will commence shortly :))

2 comment(s)

  1. A good article and I am guilty as charged about changing my mind. In fact I am sooo wrong about so many things, I don't know where to begin.

    Fortunately, there is no harm done adjusting a stance after learning some more about a topic. In fact, saying you were wrong is a sign of intelligence.


    Bill. I mean, Ed

    Comment by Ed (visitor) on Wed, Oct 10, 2007 @ 04:22 IST #
  2. Thanks, Bill Ed. :)

    Well, changing your mind is neither a virtue nor a vice. The point of my article is that if it is necessary to do so in the process of evolving your thinking, so be it.

    Comment by hari (blog owner) on Wed, Oct 10, 2007 @ 07:47 IST #

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