I was listening to the radio last week when I heard the presenter (Chris Evans) say “What’s the point in having a mind if you can’t change it?”
Of course, my ears pricked up at that and it got me thinking: if you have a point of view, is it a good thing or a bad thing to stick to it?
After much mulling, I decided that it was both good and bad, and here is how:
Not being easily swayed to someone else’s view can be an indication of a strong sense of self, being a person of principle, not easily swayed. If you are simply a mirror for someone else’s opinions, then what do you stand for? Who are you?
It can be a sign that you are rigid in your thinking, not open to new information which, given due consideration, can change your perspective on a situation in a way which empowers. It can be a sign that you are simply seeking validation for currently held views – something called confirmation bias. We are all prone to it, unconsciously, and it can keep us trapped.
Since thoughts create feelings and feelings create behaviours and behaviours create results, if you always think what you always thought, you could be stuck in a situation which no longer serves. Thoughts and beliefs are just opinions, they are not fact, and they can limit you if you are not aware. Widening your perspective, being open to new ideas, can create more opportunities. It can also ease conflict, enabling a win-win to be achieved. It can be a platform for growth and for a stronger, more honest relationship with yourself and others.
Getting the balance right
So, how do you know if you are being sufficiently flexible-rigid? If you never change your mind about anything, you are probably a rigid thinker. If you are always changing your mind, it means you’re unlikely to have a strong sense of self. You need a balance of holding certain views and beliefs, and considering others before adopting them as valid for you. It requires an openness, a willingness to see another perspective and the ability to take a balanced view.
It is useful to develop the ability to look for evidence for and against an idea before adopting it as ‘truth’. It’s a real gift to be able to take in new information and see it objectively before deciding whether to allow it to affect your original stance.
Is your umbrella open?
It was Walter Gropius who said that your mind is like an umbrella, it functions best when open. And I couldn’t agree more.
If this resonates with you at all and you would like some support to help you develop your perspective, do feel free to call for an informal chat on 0345 130 0854.