If there were one human habit, one way in which we think and behave that we could usefully change, that would it be?
I suggest that humanity, individually and collectively, would really improve our lot if we could remove our propensity for preconceptions.
A preconception is whenever we enter a situation with our minds already made up about at least some aspect of it: it’s raining so we’ll be cold and wet; X is present, and they’ll be grumpy; it’s a bank holiday, everywhere will be heaving . . . and so on. We do it all the time. Extensively. We do it automatically, subconsciously.
And it’s what stops us being present and entering into each moment as a conscious, aware human-being willing and able to respond to that moment. It’s also what leads to arguments, conflicts and wars . . . but that’s the topic of my next blog!
Every time we catch ourselves preconceiving we become aware of how much our minds are, so often, locked in the past: they’ve taken past experiences and extrapolated any conclusions from it into the future. That is not being present! On the contrary.
In realty, every situation is, at least subtly, different. To best benefit from each moment of reality, we need to be wholly IN that moment . . . not in a preconceived version of it!
Thus, the first step is to become aware of the extent to which our lives . . and minds . .. are full of preconceptions. Hopefully, by reading and reflecting on this, you’ll be that bit more conscious of your preconceptions.
Then you can choose . . . to mentally side-step them . . . and, instead, engage with that moment as it actually is . . . not as you’re assuming it is.