Posts Tagged ‘assumption’

Assumptions, true, maybe true, or false?

August 23rd, 2018

We have assumptions about reality

What are you assuming and is it true???

Late in June I wrote a blog on how we believe things that are not true… http://www.jehle-coachingexpat.com/2018/06/26/what-story-are-you-telling/#comment-17912those beliefs are assumptions.

Assumptions that are not true hold us backand often crippleus.  So, what assumptions might these be and how do we change them?  Some of the assumptions may be true (possible), some are probably false (either about yourself or about life, in general).

Here are some assumptions- do you believe any?

Possibly true                                       False (about self)                   False (about life)

Someone else is better at x               I’m stupid                                I must not fail

It will be difficult                                 I can’t handle it                       It’s not possible

I may cry                                              I can’t lead (or x)                     People in power x

 

Let’s look at these assumptions one at a time and see how they are true – or not.

First, someone is better at x.

That’s most likely true, as there is almost always someone better (or worse) than we are at doing something.  So, then the question would be, “So, What?  What’s important about this and how does it affect the issue at hand?” Is this truth worth you stopping?  Most likely, not.  Instead find the reason you are doing x and evaluate its outcome; then find a way through it and keep going.  This little thought process of questioning can work for the other two possibly true assumptions, too.

But how can you tellif it’s true (that’s often obvious, with physical proof, like this: at the moment there is a drought in most of Switzerland.  And how mightit be a possibly true fact?  Then the answer could be yes or no and often has “negative” connotations for you—something that may stop you from making a correct decision.

What about the false-self-truths?

“I am stupid”

How do I know for sure is not true?  Well, the easy answer is, I can’t know for sure.  But I personally choose to believe that we allare 1) good, well-made humans 2) capable of growth and learning and 3) are trying our best.  I choose to think and believe positively about my fellow human beings.  And, usually my assumptions about you are true. Thus, you are not stupid, with help and learning you can handle it and maybe you can learn to lead (it’s a skill, not a character trait).  Coaching helps a lot with these kinds of false assumptions.

What about false-life-assumptions?

According to Nancy Kline in her book, “Time to Think”, she calls these bedrock assumptions- the assumptions you choose to base your life on.  And they may be very false.  Let’s looks at these:

I must not fail-  this is false!  The truth: we learn best from failing.

It’s not possible– this can be a bedrock assumption if you say this a lot (or all) of the time.  If you do, be careful!  If you say it once in a blue moon, then it may be true.  But, as most problems have solutions, these assumptions are most likely false.  You just have to find a way.

People in power think best– false!  Who says so? How can it be proven?  Is this a way of your (or my) giving up responsibility for the issue?  Are there exceptions to this (of course there are!!!)

So, here are some questions for you to consider:

-What are you assuming that is stopping you from doing what you want?  If that assumption is possibly true, then ask:

-If you knew the oppositewould happen, what would that look like? (This is your answer, so it may not be these, but I’ll give it a try: someone else better at x-  so the opposite is: I am an expert at x; it will be difficult- the opposite is: it will be a piece of cake, done in a jiffy; I may cry- the opposite is: I may smile).  Say it aloud, that opposite.

-So then, if you knew you were an expert at x(it’s easily done, you might smile), how would you feel when they asked you to do x?

And what more would you do?

Here are the steps, again:

  • Figure out what kind of assumption it is
  • Look for false assumptions, especially ones that affect your belief system
  • Find the opposite (this is your true answer, and it can be varied, depending on you alone) to the false assumption
  • Ask the what ifquestion: If you knew + your opposite + situation- eg:
    • “you are extremely capable at leading”, how would you feel about leading the project?
  • Ask the question twice or three times to let the answers sink in and to look for further answers

Here are some good questions to ask at the “if you knew” step:

  • If you knew that you colleague respects you, what would you do?
  • If you knew that people from your background think brilliantly, what would you do?
  • If you knew that you can come up with ideas better than the boss, what would you do?
  • If you knew that s/he isn’t judging you, what would you do?
  • And: What would you say, next?  What else would you do?

So, before you get all upset about a situation, thinkabout you assumptions- if they are true, or not.  Then after that, take a positive truthand move from there:  truth-belief-act-feel.  But for now, just work on your assumptions.

Have a great time thinking well.

 

Patricia Jehle

patricia@jehle-coaching.com

www.jehle-coaching.com