This post is the second half of my last one, "Surfacing Assumptions". Here I'll continue exploring the topic of conquering assumptions.
Conquering assumptions makes assumptions sound bad. Actually, some assumptions are not necessarily bad, they may develop into personal opinions which build identities. Instead, before conquering, I would propose "acknowledging assumptions". Be aware of repeating assumptions that hinder your connection with others, assumptions that you impose on things that blindsight you from what other people see, assumptions that are false by fact.
The main reason I felt inadequate in my last post is that it could sound like my childhood is the cause to blame. It is not. A big part of the responsibilities comes from me. It is on me to acknowledge and improve on these assumptions that I see as issues. Also, looking back at the past helps you acknowledge the assumptions, but definitely not a way to resolve.
One way to conquer assumptions is to challenge them. How to challenge your age-old rotted assumptions? You can ask yourself is there any alternative way to react? Watch how your friends react to it. Read on how other people handle similar situations. Again, as I said in my day 8 post, ask for feedback. Also, give permission to friends for honest conversation.
Permission is what you can proactively give on your side to foster transparency in friendships. I'm not good at it yet, but I do have a friend who set a great example for me, eg, before we dive in a serious discussion he'll always begin with "This is my opinion. Tell me what you think", "Feel free to add to my idea". I've found these efforts on transparency really helped us set a comfortable environment. This allows us to be completely open to critique since we're ready for it and know that we know it's for our own good.
Another way is to open yourself to new ideas. Try to have your learning antenna open not just when you're dealing with issues but also how other people deal with their issues. The best and smartest people in my life always have their antenna open to receive and give. They are often also the most resourceful people. Also, listen to other people's stories, and learn from them. Get inspired by their good qualities and try to assimilate them into your own identity.
The past does not define who we are, nor assumptions. Let your assumptions be mutable, and let the way we act now contributes to the better who that we'll be in the future.