You are not as open-minded as you think!

I don’t want to insult you by saying that. It happens to be true for almost everyone, including me.

If you don’t believe me, ask yourself: When was the last time you changed your mind? (Asking the waiter to change your order from vegetables to french fries, or changeing the awkward shoes when no one sees it, don’t really count!)

When was the last time you changed your mind about an opinion, or belief, that REALLY matters ???

If something specific comes to mind, tell us in the comments! If not, no worries, most of us can’t think of too much of the first, because most people aren’t as open-minded as they think they are. Accepting this is the first step to being more open-minded.

So what does it mean to be open minded and why is it so fashionable?

If clarifications are needed, dear gentlemen, if a young lady says that she is open-minded, it does not necessarily mean that she is available, at any cost, without obligations and without feelings. An open mind generally means that a person has no preconceptions, religious, political or any specific prejudices.

To be open minded, to have an open mind, is the willingness to seek and accept evidence, even if it is against your beliefs, plans and goals. Openness to properly evaluate these when they are available. Don’t confuse being open-minded with being undecided, contemptuous or unable to think for oneself!

An open-minded person listens to his “opponent” in a debate to see if the information makes sense, or if it makes sense to change his mind. Open minded means to consider different opinions and ideas without considering them worse than your own!

Why is it important to be open minded?

Having an open mind is more than a positive character trait, it is what allows you to think critically and rationally. It is essential to step out of your comfort zone and consider other ideas and perspectives, especially nowadays. Otherwise how do you keep up?

How can you be more open-minded? Start by putting your mind to work, and accept that not everything is a universal truth just because you know it, or it suits you!

Everyone has access to a huge amount of information, but you have to go through the filter of objectivity. For example, it is more convenient for all of us to blame the sign in which we were born for personal failures, but we know very well that it is not so. Spreading these dogmas may reassure you at the moment, but it is not constructive in the long run.

Napoleon was above average, the hottest part of hot peppers are not the seeds, the Buddha was not chubby at all, the bats are not blind … don’t believe it? Check Wikipedia! Google seems to be more open minded than most of us!

When was the last time you said to someone, “You were right. I was wrong “?

Most of us would have punched the wall more times than saying these 5 words in that order! That fist hurts less …

But unlike the wall, our psyche becomes more flexible when we start using these words. You were right, I was wrong – it becomes less painful over time!

It seems hard to believe in a world where we all always want to be right, but this behavior does us good. It meant that I learned something new, and I stopped “I  know better” atitude, and I became more open to acceptance and tolerance.

 Have you ever thought about what needs to happen for you to give up your strong beliefs?

For example, I admit, in my case, a strong belief (which some of you know too well) is that: multitasking is more productive!

What made me change my mind?

 It turned out, according to studies by the University of California, that it takes us an average of 23 minutes to refocus on what we were doing when we stopped / stopped.

So, if you work and receive a notification, you lose 2 minutes to read it + maybe answer someone, another 2 minutes + 23 minutes to reorient yourself, and that’s how you wasted 27 minutes! It doesn’t sound very productive, does it?

Acceptance is not always as easy as it sounds, I know. This is exactly what makes it so valuable! Acceptance opens a new window in your thoughts and opinions, so the mind ends up being open to the new, that’s how you become truly OPEN MINDED!

It is time to stop judging things as good or bad, sometimes they are just different. It is worth giving yourself the chance to understand them, because a whole new world opens up to you, a new perspective before your eyes.

The next time you doubt that you might be wrong, remember that you have a brain designed with blind spots, optical and psychological. And one of his smartest tricks is to give us the reassuring delusion that we personally don’t have, it doesn’t apply to us, only to others.

Do you know that kid who comes with the work signed it at home and tries to make an 8 out of 3 he got at the chemistry test? The brain often tries to do the same thing. It is well-intentioned.

The brain fills in the gaps to protect you from doubts, indecisions and inconveniences. Although well-intentioned, if we let him do this too often, these blind spots become too big and dangerous. The good news is that most of the time others can see your blind spots very clearly.

 Talk to someone you trust today, and ask them to help you find that point, and be open enough to listen carefully to what they say.

Where do we start ?

“It’s easier to act your way into a new way of thinking than think your way into a new way of acting.” Jerry Sternin, The Power of Positive Deviance

Sometimes we end up getting used to the change, to the little things, and the mind will enter that FOMO and follow the example. (FOMO finally being useful for something)

Change does not have to be big and unpleasant, make it fun!Play! Make it a habit to be open! Here are some ways you can start playing:

  •              Clothes: What we wear influences the way we think and act. You don’t really think about changing the car wheel when you have white pants on, do you? Try new things, see if the distressed jeans make you feel lighter, or if the suit makes you want to open the camera at the zoom session.
  •              Movement: Forget the gym, and go for a run in the morning, try pushups instrad of situps , smile at the sleepy guy walking his dog instead of the selfie mirror!
  •              Routine and environment: Put the sugar before the coffee in the cup (or vice versa). Choose another road through the city, park on the other side of the building, work on the terrace not at the table or even on the riverside, see what new things you discover this way.
  •              People: Instead of judging the artist for not doing anything productive, stay with him until 2 o’clock at night, when he has to finish a sketch that he is obesssing about. Instead of condemning the woman who “did nothing for 10 years raising 2 children”, see if you would resist 24 hours with everything she does. Instead of deciding what kind of work brings value and is fairly well paid, try a few different areas, and then see if the comparison is worth!

Leave the “BUT” behind !!!

Saying “BUT” in a conversation is a refusal to acknowledge that your conversation partner’s opinion may be as viable as yours!

Yes but…

It is better to replace the “but” with “Yes, and….” Or if there really is no room for the position taken by the interlocutor, use “Interesting, and….” or “I understand and…”

For example, your slightly annoying mother-in-law draws your attention again to the fact that “you can’t wear shorts for a family dinner, it’s not polite”.

You might answer, “But I hate to dress up.” We all know how successful this conversation will be! :))) So maybe try to answer them as follows: “I understand, and how do I avoid the 40C degrees and staying sweaty and uncomfortable all night?” It will bring you to a more open discussion on both sides, even if it is quite unlikely to successfully sell the idea of ​​beach shorts fort he diner table …: D

I can’t wait for you to tell me how a day without a “but” came out in your conversations.

Until the open mind becomes your friend reminding you to learn, and especially to practice it, here are some simple but very useful techniques:

• Always remember – your beliefs are not absolute truths !

• Admit your mistakes !

• Listen to the beliefs of others !

• Travel!!! Get to know other cultures!

• Don’t stop being curious !!!