You Won't Get Fooled Again

What has really happened when something we knew with certainty we could count on suddenly becomes a trail of broken dreams or hollow promises? The answer lies buried in the details; why did we believe we could count on our expected outcome? If this happens frequently the method of arriving at accurate conclusions is flawed. Disappointment is a painful companion we are always eager to leave behind; the goal is to avoid running into it again if possible.

A look in the rear view mirror allows us to review the 'facts' we wish we had known about a painful disappointment. Were those facts hidden, veiled under something that clouded our vision? Probably not; the truth is that 'facts' abound in every situation. Many times we discount and even ignore them because they don't reinforce what we want to believe. Either of these choices cause niggling doubts that we push to the back of our minds or we are completely oblivious to until we are stunned when they come crashing into our reality.

As doubts surface we may decide to share them with someone close. Unfortunately the people who are close to us are inclined to agree with the perception we have created about the issue. Friends respond with a bias; their assessment is flawed by a desire to be loyal. How do we begin to build a better system of arriving at accurate conclusions before we create those lasting, flawed expectations?

We exist in a fast paced environment. Instant information is a click away as we turn to our favorite search engine that offers more information than a college library. We decide which information seems to fit our situation. We can select options that provide 'facts' that will reinforce what we want to believe or do something daring, like using discernment. It is an old word chock full of the promise of accuracy when it is applied.

Discernment is only possible when we can do two things before we begin. We must remove any emotion from the situation and lose any attachment to the outcome. This ensures that we will examine the situation with a detachment that allows us to see clearly and make good decisions about what is truth.

Is it really acceptable to be unemotional when we are dealing with an emotional situation? It is essential. When emotion is applied chaos ensues. It becomes impossible to separate fact from denial when we are caught in the throes of emotional entanglements. Discernment invites us to be shrewd, to zero in on reality. It is discrimination walking in tandem with sensitivity; these are perfect companions. One demands that we are carefully examining only the facts, the other invites us to be kind to ourselves, to use compassion as we arrive at a clear choice that is beneficial to our future.

Good choices eliminate unnecessary bumpy roads, shocking outcomes and broken hearts. If you are willing to be discerning in your choices you won't be easily fooled again.


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