The Idea: Are You Open Minded?

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The Idea: Are You Open Minded?

First Impressions are Wrong                                                                       

Did you know that first impressions are wrong 70 percent of the time?   According to former Harvard researcher, Jamie Holmes, “We tend to see patterns where none exist and embrace certainty when none is justified.”  Our brain looks for shortcuts, which results in doubt, overestimation of strengths, underestimation of risk, and neglect of how we impact others.

Executive coaches and neurology experts alike affirm our proclivity to fatally illogical decision-making.  Something to ponder: “We gather information selectively, interpret it prejudicially, and recall it unreliably.” (Executive Coach Marshall Goldsmith)

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Prejudice Is Constant

Jordan Peterson calls it “the miracle of simplification.”  Our complex world is too much for our minds so we simplify it the only way we can: by filtering information, filling in the gaps, and jumping to conclusions. We don’t see our full surroundings and we filter out crucial information.  All of us create illusions, assuming some information is more important than others, and prejudging most things in our path.

“The normal state of your mind is that you have intuitive feelings and opinions about almost everything that comes your way.  You like or dislike people long before you know much about them; you trust or distrust strangers without knowing why; you feel that an enterprise is bound to succeed without analyzing it.” (Daniel Kahneman, Thinking Fast and Slow)

Challenge your assumptions.  “Push the Spotlight Around”

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Process Beats Analysis

When researchers compared whether process or analysis was more important in producing good decisions –  those that increased revenues, profits, and market share – they found that “process mattered more than analysis, by a factor of six.”  Often, a good process led to analysis, systematically eliminating our inherently faulty logic.  (Chip and Dan Heath, Decisive)

There’s a reason close-minded people get beat. These individuals are more focused on being right than learning and remaining curious.  Without those traits, our mind may lead us down perilous paths. Are you truly open minded?

“Your conscious mind is basically an overconfident storyteller.” (Tim Wilson)

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