MY TWO CENTS:
Have you ever read anything on the internet and wondered to yourself, “Is that REALLY true?”
In fact, State Farm put out a really funny commercial not that long ago that makes fun of the idea that EVERYTHING on the internet is true. While I’m not trying to promote State Farm, the commercial is worth a quick look if you don’t remember it…https://youtu.be/34CHqptjj9E.
I read an interesting article a couple of weeks ago that challenges whether we should believe everything we think. It’s been rattling around in my head since reading it, so I thought I’d share my own summary.
From what sources come our thoughts, our perspective, and our beliefs? Most of us who’ve circled the sun a few times know that many (if not all) of our beliefs, perspectives, and thoughts come as a result of our influences. Those influences could include the mentors (or detractors) in our lives. Those influences could include the books we’ve read, music to which we’ve listened, and speeches we’ve heard. Those influences could also include the movies and TV shows we’ve watched, or the news media we choose to consume.
And, if our thoughts are constructed by our influences, can we really trust those thoughts to be true? Since we all know better than to believe everything we read on the internet without proper support, justification, and data, wouldn’t it make sense to challenge our own thinking now and again?
The author of the article I referenced (Steve Luckenbach) shared the “if I only knew then what I know now” experience to which all of us can relate. This is a great example of the point of challenging what we, at this singular point in our life, trust from our own thinking.
Now that I’ve sufficiently stirred the pot and made our readers uncomfortable, please give me the latitude to offer a practical approach. What would it look like if we were purposeful with taking our thoughts captive? How about making a routine out of saying to ourselves, “Why do you think like that?” or “Why does that make you sad/mad/feelin’ bad?”
I contend that if we will not let our unbridled and unchecked thinking control us, we can begin to learn more about the world around us. We can begin to learn to love those with whom we think we have nothing in common. We can begin to care about stuff that those we love care about when we never used to understand why.
In case you’re wondering…I’m writing this for myself! Hopefully, you’ll find encouragement on your own journey as we grow toward our full potential of positively influencing our corner of the world!!
Make it a great week!
Scott Cousino, CFP®