Many people think they have a bad memory or simply cannot think straight. There are too many events which turn out that we forget something or neglect to prepare for the obvious, and this is attributed to a bad memory. What if it has nothing to do with memory at all but rather is the way thought is processed?
How often have you heard or said; “What were you thinking!” and the reply is the usual; “I don’t know.” How can you not know? That is unacceptable, and of course that reply is usually followed by more frustration for all concerned.
I would like to propose a possible solution and improvement to this common problem. The foundation of this article is that it is not really a bad memory that is the problem. Rather it is the thought process that does not take into account all the possible variables and potential aspects of the situation.
Basically, we do not consider everything that can happen and thus are ill prepared for the situation, then blame it on a bad memory because that is the habitual or commonly used excuse, right along with; “I guess I didn’t think about it.”
Exactly! We do not think, yet that same person who did not think has a brain that does function adequately or even extremely well at other times. And this is the point which gives me hope. That my brain does work very well at times yet fails to function on even the simplest level at other times. Thus it cannot be my brain itself that is defective or limited, but something else that is causing the problem.
I will call the failing part the ‘logical anticipation of probabilities.’ Taking a recent example, a friend was coming over to my house to pick up a rather large item that I was storing for him. He showed up with a car already full of other stuff leaving no room to put in the package. His excuse was that he did not know how big the package he was collecting would be. That is a reasonable explanation but not a logical excuse.
The result was that he had to go back home again, empty his car, then come back again to pick it up. Had he applied logical reasoning, then he could have saved himself an extra trip. And it is from this last example that I have based this article.
Having owned several businesses, the lack of common sense was always a daily frustration. Why is it called ‘common sense’ when it is so very rare! The greatest frustration was, as I said before, simple errors were caused by people who otherwise acted very intelligently.
The explanation is that we did not think, yet the truth is that we did think, however we did not think about the probabilities of the situation. The intellect was thinking, but it was blinded from seeing the details. There is a universal law we must take into account which is that everything we do is done for a reason. Wether you know the reason or not, or if the reason is a good or bad one, is irrelevant, there is always a reason.
The situation is that a person is given a task, they neglect to consider all the possibilities, and they fail to complete the task adequately. The excuse of not thinking is not valid since we are always thinking about something. Thus the solution is found in the question; “What were you thinking?”
To find the answer to that question, we must look at the source of our thoughts, which is our personality. Your brain does not ‘think’. It is only an organ that processes thoughts and impulses. It is your personality, who you are, that is doing the thinking. Those thoughts are sent to the brain and it then processes that information, which in turn results in your actions.
The next step is to determine your motivation for the things you think, or fail to think about. This brings us to the next universal law which is that the human design is to conserve energy, or in common terms of expression, to be lazy. The excuse given for laziness is ‘trying to be efficient, to save time and money’. Cheap and lazy, results in extra time and cost!
If we accept that the universal laws of ‘everything we do is done for a reason’ and ‘the human design is to conserve energy’ effect all of us, we can then apply the other law of; ‘My brain works sometimes, thus it can work all the time IF I know how to use it.’
And here is the key to using it well. The term I have always used to describe myself is that I am an ‘optimistic pessimist’. I believe things will work out well, but at the same time I consider everything that can go wrong. This means I look at all the potential possibilities and am well prepared for every situation that could occur.
I learnt a great phrase from my flight instructor; “Better to have and not need than to need and not have.”
This is such a simple concept that it is a wonder why so many people do not follow it. And to this question I also have an answer: The devil is in the half truth.
There is a wide spread philosophy that we should always have positive thoughts. That is true. The problem is that taking this saying alone is only half the truth because it does not express that taking into account possible problems is NOT a negative thought. It becomes a half truth because one eye sees the truth while we close the other eye to the reality of life on earth that, as Mr. Murphy said so well; “Anything that can go wrong, will go wrong.”
This is not being negative, it is being objective. Have you ever tried closing one eye and looking around the room, or trying to work at your desk? So many things that were there are no longer visible. Just because you do not see it, does not mean it is not there.
Life does not change if we close one eye, it just gives us a big surprise when it bites your bum! Accept that there are always going to be issues or problems in every endeavor, and that will get your mind to start opening up because you will be willing to see all possibilities.
When your mind starts to open, you will be able to see the potential possibilities in every event. And the best part of this is that when you are accepting of reality and objectively considering the things that can go wrong, your mind will also be open to new ideas that can be done. You have now opened the door to pure creativity and invention.