I'm Kirk Wheeler. It's January 26th, 2021. Happy Tuesday. I'm so glad you're here.
Let's start with some questions. What is something you have changed your mind about recently? What was it that changed your mind? Was it the opinion of someone you trust? Had some new information become available? Were you surprised?
And here's one last question, was ignorance the source?
"The man who never alters his opinion is like standing water and breeds reptiles of the mind." -William Blake
These days, it can feel like changing your mind is a bad thing to do. It takes a lot of courage to say, I was wrong. But many times it's exactly the right thing to do.
The scientific method has been used to construct much of the modern world we live in and it's based on a seemingly simple idea. Notice something, ask a question about it, and then form an opinion or a hypothesis, and test it. And based on the outcome of the test, accept your new found awesomeness, or admit that your hypothesis or opinion was wrong and needs to be re-evaluated.
We teach this to our children in school. It's a great way to investigate the world.
But there are many times in our own lives where we stop at the newly formed opinion and never test our assumptions. We take them as true and never looked much further. And in the world of filter bubbles, we have to work even harder to change our minds, but we need to.
Maybe we have a fear of pushing away people we care about, or maybe we have even gone so far as to take the ideas that we have heard or learned and made them part of our identity. But our identities are transient. We often have the sense that we are the same person we have always been. But if you have ever seen a picture of yourself on stage wearing a bright multi-colored shirt and cutoff, pajama pants that your grandmother made and thought to yourself, who is that person?
Well, it was you...or in this case, It was me. You get the idea.
We are always adapting. And if we begin to stagnate and become like that standing water, we become the kind of people who refuse to test our assumptions. We lose a vital part of our ability to navigate change. And the more we do this, the more we see the world the way we want it to be, and become more ignorant of the way the world actually is.
But there is a remedy. Get curious, ask more questions. When you encounter someone who might have a different opinion or different information than you do say something like, tell me more about that. And then test your own assumptions. And if we can model this behavior, we won't need to tell our children how important curiosity is. They will discover it naturally through our examples.
I hope you find this helpful. And remember there is no perpetual parenting playbook. We're all learning as we go. And with curiosity as our map and a willingness to change our mind, we can be ready for anything.
So good luck today. You've got this. See you tomorrow.