Even when presented with uncomfortable data, I don’t want to believe it. It’s more of a denial phase where I say it just can’t be so. Then, there’s the possibility stage where I have to look at things differently (hence my sideways picture). The possibility stage is where maybe, just maybe, this is true and I have to consider the possibility. Then, there’s the part of me that justifies why I’m right even when I’m told I was wrong. Like, I really try to make sense of my decision and tell myself why I was right to decide the way I did even when I’m also secretly pissed for believing the other story that made me decide that.
Do you do the same?
Ultimately, I go through a series of coping mechanisms I have for taking in new information that’s not what I expected. But, unlike others I know, I don’t shy away from the new data; in fact, I’d say it’s quite the opposite.
When I’m wrong, and I often am, I explore. Why was I wrong? What am I wrong about? What assumptions did I make? What information did I NOT have? What information did I believe that I shouldn’t have? What were my sources then? What are my sources now? You know, those kinds of things…
Now, to be completely transparent here, I’ve done this only on major life decisions: jobs, stocks, properties, employees, vehicles, schools, relationships, etc.
Some decisions are temporary and some are permanent. Temporary ones sting and can be costly, but you can eventually get past them. Permanent ones are, well, just that. I’ve made some bad decisions in the past where I wish I could undo what I did only to find my mind running in circles not doing anything other than punishing me over and over again.
Forgiving oneself is tough, but it’s important. We all make mistakes and we all pay for them in some form or fashion (financially, mental, physical, our health, etc).
Being empathetic of others who’ve made mistakes is also important and is something I’m still working towards.
As vast arrays of information come out on a multitude of topics in the near future, many people will find themselves in complete denial. Some will stop there.
Even when presented with new data, many will disregard it as it won’t be what they want to hear or believe. I get it, but now, more than ever, be open to the possibilities.
Then, some will tell themselves their decisions were fully justified and, understandably, as it lessens the accountability.
Some will adapt and roll with the punches and some will panic. Others will not believe a word of it because they’ve made their minds up long before the information comes out.
A strange, but understandable coping mechanism.
Now, if you find yourself in one of these death spirals of thoughts in the near future, don’t beat yourself up. Show yourself some grace. If you see others struggling with these things, show them some grace. Humanity needs us all to help one another now more than ever.
If I’m right about any of what I believe to be true, keep these thoughts in mind. We all get duped. We all make decisions that turn out to be bad ones. We all see and know things we wish we hadn’t. We all have regrets.
How we move forward over the next couple of months may end up shaping the future of this world.
So, yeah, I’ve been duped a time or three, but this time, I see how we’re all being sold oceanfront property where none exists.
Empathy and grace. Stock up on both as quickly as you can. This river runs deep.
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