Life Principles - 7 signs to recognize close-minded people

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It’s easy to tell an open-minded person from a close-minded person because they act very differently

If you know that you are blind, you can figure out a way to see, whereas if you don’t know you’re blind, you will continue to bump into your problems. In order words, if you can recognize that you have blind spots and open-mindedly consider the possibility that others might see something better than you – and that the threats and opportunities they are trying to point out really exist – you are more likely to make good decision.

It’s easy to tell an open-minded person from a close-minded person because they act very differently. Here are some cues to tell you whether you or others are being close-minded:

1, Close-minded people don’t want their ideas challenged – They are typically frustrated that they can’t get the other person to agree with them instead of curious as to why the other person disagrees. They feel bad about getting something wrong and more interested in being proven right than in asking questions and learning other’s perspective.

Open-minded people on the other hand are more curious about why there is disagreement. They are not angry when someone disagrees. They understand that there is always the possibility that they might be wrong and that it worth the little bit of time it takes to consider the other person’s views in order to be sure they aren’t missing or making a mistake.

2, Close-minded people are more likely to make statements than ask questions. While believability entitles you to make statements in certain circumstances, truly open-minded people, even the most believable people I know, always ask a lot of questions. Nonbelievable people often tell me that their statements are actually implicit questions, though they’re phrased as low-confidence statements. While that’s sometimes true, in my experience it’s more often not.

Open-minded people genuinely believe that they could be wrong; the questions that they ask are genuine. They also assess their relative believability to determine whether their primary role should be a student, a teacher or peer.

3, close-minded people focus much more on being understood than on understanding others. When people disagree, they tend to be quicker to assume that thy aren’t being understood than to consider whether they are the ones who are not understanding the other person perspective.

Open-minded people always feel compelled to see things through other’s eyes.

4, close-minded people say things like “I could be wrong…but here is my opinion.” This is a classic cue I hear all the time. It’s often a perfunctory gesture that allows people to hold their own opinion while convincing themselves that they are being open-minded. If your statement starts with “I could be wrong” or “I’m not believable,” you should probably follow it with a question and not an assertion.

Open-minded people know when to make statements and when to ask questions.

5, Close-minded people block others from speaking. If it seems like someone isn’t leaving space for the other person in a conversation, its possible they are blocking. To get around blocking, enforce the “two-minute rule” (listening without interrupting)

Open-minded people are always more interested in listening than in speaking; they encourage others to voice their views.

6, Close-minded people have trouble holding two thoughts simultaneously in their minds. They allow their own view to crowd out those of others.

Open-minded people can take in the thoughts of others without losing their ability to think well – they can hold two or more conflicting concepts in their mind and go back and forth between them to assess their relative merits.

7, Close-minded people lack a deep sense of humility. Humility typically comes from an experience of crashing, which leads to an enlightened focus on knowing what one doesn’t know.

Open-minded people approach everything with a deep-seated fear that they may be wrong.

Once you can sort out open-minded from close-minded people, you will find that you want to surround yourself with open-minded ones. Doing so will not only make your decision making more effective but you’ll also learn a tremendous amount.

A few good decision makers can significantly improve his or her decision making with the help of other excellent decision makers.

Culled from Ray Dalio’s Principles

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