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What Do Assumptions Cost?


Last evening the sun was low and I was alone jogging through a cemetery.  In the distance, I could see a lone black car parked at the end of the trail. What many men don’t understand or take for granted is that to a woman this feels frightening. Am I in danger? Will I be attacked? There is nobody around to hear me scream?

I quickly pretended I was talking on the phone, I held my chest high and looked confident.  I was reviewing in my mind how to call 911 on the side buttons, my breathing was rapid and I was keenly aware of the exits and hiding spots.  I could see a white male arm out the window and nothing else, I ran by and there was a young adult quietly texting and didn’t even lookup. Wow, did I blow that out of proportion!

It’s shocking how one person’s perception can be incredibly different from the other persons’ reality or intention.

What are the assumptions you’re making about the people you work with?  Do they have an alternative motive?  Are they being honest? Is this a power game?   I would suggest you take a moment and think about the stories you have created and how much of that is steeped in the truth.

 

How much energy is your perspective-taking away from meaningful work?


Hold yourself accountable to find clarity so decisions represent reality and are not weighted in fear or misinterpretation.  It is so easy to make an assumption in an effort to validate our fears or personal goals. Ultimately that does not serve you or your purpose.


“We make all sorts of assumptions because we don’t have the courage to ask questions”

- Miquel Ruiz


Challenge yourself to ask one more question. Unconsciously we can spin words, body language, and inflection without an appreciation for its damage.  A snowball effect will ensue that will take you down an unproductive path.  


Challenge yourself to be aware of your assumptions and label them as that. To know that they are not rooted in truth. Hold yourself accountable for your biases and blind spots and seek clarity through curiosity and questions.


Ask, “how do I know this is true and how can I verify?”


Sam Chand speaks to the Collision of Assumptions and asks:

  •  ”Are you willing to change your assumptions?"

  •  "Are you going to be captive to your assumptions?” 


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