Opinions are a matter of personal tastes; You can always have an opinion about whatever you want. You can talk about the universe, the earth, about relationships, business and you can also think about whatever you want and express your opinion in so many ways, but actually understanding and changing an opinion takes more than just courage, it takes a deeper and more progressive way of thinking.
A lot of people among a research that I’ve done for the past 12 years (and still ongoing) on how people innovate and change. It can be as simple as the following: You are not satisfied with the current situation you seek change.
You try to analyze the current status quo and you don’t like things the way they are; You may want them to be better, faster, different. A lot of skills are very important in the coming era such as complex problem solving and more. However, it goes back fundamentally to small things: How you can change your opinion about a simple fact; You could be having an opinion about a specific type of food or drink being good or bad, healthy or not, and that is the simplest; You can eat whatever you want, just like everybody else who have specific preferences around food.
But the issue about opinions, is what could contribute to changing your mind about someone, something or an activity.
This week’s tip is another followup on a previous post about how to see things from other person’s perspective.
Let’s try to visualize the following situation as if you are in the middle of a scenario where a specific situation could have happened to you (Just because if you put a scenario in your head doesn’t mean that it will happen to you or it may happen to you but it’s a thought provoking exercise):
You start by imagining this specific scenario in your head, where you are in the position of the person who’s doing something that you don’t necessarily like. What would happen if you’ve been in the same situation as that person? He or she could be from another religion, another faith and/or maybe with different political affiliation and so on.
If you look at what he or she is doing from your own perspective, very likely you’re not going to change but when you switch to their perspective, and their way of thinking, you might think that “yes – if I were in their place, maybe I would’ve done/thought the same.”
If you were born with a particular family within a particular social structure etc, more likely you would like what they are doing and would be convinced about that, you (may) would be convinced that this is the right way of doing specific things, and so on. Right?
For example: Let’s say you are in born in China, there are a lot of food in that part of the world that other countries don’t necessarily eat (Roasted Insects? snakes… etc), however you may wonder why wouldn’t the rest of the world be eating these and instead they would prefer to starve or eat a different type of food. You can see that Your Normal now is different that your Normal if you were born and lived in the Middle East.
When I looked at researches related to Alternative source of food, despite that I don’t necessarily like it, I found that insects are a great source of protein and it could solve a great deal of food problems in the future, however would you still do it? now if you had no other choice? can you see the different perspective now.
It could happen to you to just try to look for another perspective, try to change your opinion, train yourself to change your opinion if there is a strong evidence at least, if not and you cannot change that, train your mind to respect the others’ opinion.
Because if you were in their place, you may very likely would have done very close, or similar to what they have done, or thought.
Have a nice week.
Samer Chidiac is a Strategic Innovation Advisor, a Business Psychologist, a Philanthropist, an Author and a Speaker.