Under the weight of our emotional baggage, many of us are carrying around opinions that aren’t actually ours. For sure, these might be valid opinions, but if they aren’t our own, arrived at through our own mature thought processes, it is more harmful than holding a wrong opinion that we came to in an honest way. Surprising, huh?
Sure enough, it turns out that an honest mistake trumps an opinion arrived at through weak reasoning and lack of courage. Let’s face facts: we’re fallible humans and we make mistakes. Full stop. But that doesn’t address the reason we spout opinions not of our own making.
One possible reason: we’re a lazy bunch. If it’s not really our problem, we think it’s not important enough to make the effort of thinking independently. You know, just for the sake of truth. So we’ll grab someone else’s opinion, try it on for size, and if it fits well enough—sold. We somehow think this is preferable to holding no opinion.
Another reason: we feel inferior. In that case, we are so certain that others know better than we do, we’ll rely on them for forming our opinions for us. Weird thing is, the more opinions we hold that aren’t our own, the more we secretly hate ourselves. The more we despise ourselves, the greater our apparent need to let someone else think for us. Around and around we go. We need to have the guts to step off this merry-go-round.
When we do formulate our own view of things, we may find our ideas differ from others. And when we have the courage to live up to them, paying the price of possibly swimming against popular opinion, we automatically find a whole new pool of self-respect. And that sets us free. On the other hand, if we come to the same opinion we held before, but now we really own it, the courage it took to break free from the yoke of weakness we were wearing will have the same positive effect.
Listen and learn more.
Read Finding Gold, Chapter 3: The Importance of Forming Independent Opinions