by Donnette Pinkerton, Featured Contributor
Reality Ruined My Life – I blame Walt Disney for my high expectations on men.
OFTEN TIMES we approach a social situation with an expectation of what the other person believes, how the person will react, and what results we will obtain. Our experiences in life are what create these expectations. We need to have the wisdom to respect the fact that situations may not be as we anticipated. Reality left me with two options, either I acquire a taste of a lifelong rollercoaster ride or I remain forever alone at the entrance gate. Be cautious of having expectations on people or situations because you may be losing out of an awesome ride full of opportunities.
The Fewer The Facts, The Stronger The Opinion- Where facts are few, experts are many.
People will have different opinions and viewpoints and the key is to understand their point of view and not to agree or disagree. Of course you will listen to their viewpoint as long as it conforms to your theory; correct? We tend to tolerate them long enough to turn up the music in our heads and nod. Ever notice some people are nodding to a rhythm while staring at you? They have the stereo in their head cranked up to “ignore” and bee bopping to the music.
People simply tolerating one another for the sake of “getting along” are not living to their full potential no matter how great the music is. So, how do we stop this? It starts by controlling yourself. Take a few moments and pretend you are that other person with the different opinion. Answer the following questions to the best of your ability to develop a better understanding of why a person has a certain viewpoint
1. What have your life lessons been as this person? 2. How do you feel as this person (emotionally and physically)? 3. What do you smell as this person? 4. What do you see as this person? 5. What do you taste as this person? 6. What is my viewpoint as this person? 7. What was my viewpoint as me?
So what about the bee bopper? Once you understand the other person’s point of view then you can see their way of thinking better. The more you practice understanding the better your chances of you being able to turn down their music because now you can explain why you have your view through their mindset.
If you think education is time consuming, try ignorance- My brother saved me a lot of “time outs” by demonstrating what not to do.
Sometimes we are not that lucky to have someone before us making all the mistakes so that we know what not to do. However, that does not give you an excuse to rock on to the music in your head. Instead, take advantage of the situation and learn from the other person. Maybe they have valid point. Ask the person how they have developed their opinion. Make sure you practice active listening while they are speaking. Active listening involves paying attention, showing that you are interested, providing proper feedback, suspending judgment, and responding appropriately. This is impossible if you have the music in your head cranked up to “when do I get to speak”.
You do not have to attend every argument you are invited to. – I can explain it to you, but I can’t understand it for you.
Sometimes people invite you the craziest argument parties. Such as telling you that you should drink Evian water because “people” say it is more pure and taste crispier. There are those that have their mind set so firmly that the clearest label will not entice them to consider anything but. Spell the water Evian backwards and you will understand. In these situations, it is best to just acknowledge you heard the person’s words and walk away. These situations end up with the same ending as slapping a man chewing tobacco, nasty.