I am learning to let go. To let go of my attachment to ideas, things and people. It’s not easy. Yet I find myself somehow making progress. In the past I would have insisted, hung on or pushed harder in many situations, whereas now I take pause and more often than not walk away. It’s not borne out of apathy, or a sense of despair either. It is rather due to a feeling of acceptance. I accept now that I cannot always manifest my will, and that to force it, is a counterproductive waste of energy. Like fighting against the raging current of life. It is not that everything in life needs to be easy; struggle and challenge are always welcome. It is that I’m slowly homing in on the art of picking my battles more wisely. Expending my time and energy selectively on topics worth investing in, rather than trying to take it all on blindly.
However, it is a struggle. Every two steps forward seem to come at the price of one step back. One of the biggest challenges that I have been confronting recently is acknowleding my own blindspots. Apart from being hard to recognize, these hidden impairments obscure and distort my thinking in ways I never appreciated until recently. I always clung to the belief that I was more rational and objective than most of the people around me. Yet now I realize that this was merely a delusion. A convenient myth that I swallowed hook, line and sinker. My perception of reality, like everyone else’s is unfortunately corrupted. Tainted by my subjective value system, emotional state and the scourge of inherent cognitive biases, which drive me to amplify information and people that agree with what I want to hear and ignore anything which goes against it (i.e., so called confirmation bias). Despite what I sometimes feel, I am not the only sane, rational being in the room, no matter how much I deceive myself into believing this is the case.
As I pull back the wool from my eyes I am compelled to engage in a deeper reflection on this affliction that I have learned this week is called naive realism in psychology. It defines to the tee what I regularly experience as I walk through my daily life. The first step in tackling this foible is awareness. But now that I am aware, I ask myself how can I move on from this sobering realization? If my truth is not objective or rational, how can I effectively reconcile it with the world around me? That seems like an insurmountable challenge. Although, there are no easy answers here, I do see a way out of this psychological quicksand. Rather than resist it or deny it, I am taking naive reality into account in my decision making process. From now on, to the best of my ability I will strive to apply a mental checkpoint to reign in my thinking. Without abandoning my value system and world view, I am training myself to acknowledge that there are other equally valid perspectives. There is no single, monolithic, absolute truth in life. Amen!
I hope this personal reflection has stimulated you to think about your own life and beliefs in a different way! As always thanks for stopping by my blog and please feel free to leave a comment below if this post has triggered you. Also, if you would like to receive more updates about my writing kindly consider joining my newsletter mailing list by subscribing below.