Give Up Assumptions for Greatness


"We simply assume that the way we see things is the way they really are or the way they should be. And our attitudes and behaviors grow out of these assumptions." - Stephen R. Covey 


Every moment of the day you are making choices and assumptions. Choices may be minuscule or have major significance, depending on your priorities. Choosing the clothes you wear may be less important to you than for a fashion model whose career success is measured a great deal on her fashion style.

The fashion model may consistently look lovely and promotes a favorable impression from her audience, but behind the fashion runway is someone who may have a personality that turns people away. She may be bossy or unappreciative of her support staff and could be difficult to work with. She might scream at her staff, belittling them, and may well be closed to outside suggestions. Or she may be an introvert and is mistaken for someone who is aloof. Perhaps she is suffering from an illness which she has chosen to keep to herself.

Your work environment may be casual dress or classic attire; or your job may require a standard uniform. Often assumptions are made by the clothing worn by an individual. A white lab coat can suggest the wearer is a doctor, a lab technician or a chef. Jumping to conclusions by "judging a book by its cover" can be misleading. For example what are your thoughts about lawyers, teenagers, the homeless, or housewives/house-husbands? Do you lump all lawyers, all teenagers, all the homeless and all housewives/house-husbands into general one-sided beliefs. In other words, do you see all lawyers as negative or positive and the same for the other category examples? Are they either this or that with no room for other perspectives?

Perspectives are your beliefs regarding yourself and others; about what's possible and not possible. And these lead you to choices and assumptions that dictate your life. These beliefs are learned from childhood. And believe it or not the majority of adults make choices and assumptions from childhood beliefs. Their viewpoint in how they see the world and those in the world have not matured to self-awareness beyond the little child within who taught them how to manage and got them through the growing years. This worked just fine until the adult stopped paying attention to the little child who wanted to grow up. Caveat - this is not offered with the intention of growing to abandon the childlike qualities, but to move on to greater self-fulfillment and love.

Perhaps when you see a doctor in her lab coat you immediately assume that she has no worries; while she may in fact be thinking she made a bad choice in becoming a doctor, because there never seems to be enough she can do. She is feeling unrealistically guilty. The gorgeous fashion model on the runway gives the impression of confidence and yet may suffer from poor self-esteem. Both the doctor and model learned their professions successfully, but still feel something is wrong. Their beliefs about not being good enough and low self-esteem are underneath the success veneer of assumptions not uncommonly made in these two examples.  Next time, I'll offer some tips and questions to guide you to greatness...

"The least questioned assumptions are often the most questionable" - Paul Broca