November 17- Don’t Make Assumptions
“It is not important if the answer is correct; just the answer itself makes us feel safe. This is why we make assumptions.” – Don Miguel Ruiz, The Four Agreements
Answers make us feel safe and informed. Even if we have created those answers in our own imagination. It’s the prime mission of any creative person to communicate through art. We, as actors, artists, and musicians, are born with the need to share ourselves with the public in ways others share themselves with family, friends and significant others. This transparency often leaves us vulnerable to making assumptions about how others feel about our creations and about us.
Making assumptions is a great way to create a hell on earth. In the simplest instance, a glance, a supressed laugh, an off color comment, we can make a judgement. Then we drag ourselves along with our assumptions, leading to self doubt and judgement. Without asking questions, gathering actual facts and details, we’re off on a path of invented opinions and self-created illusions. To make matters worse, we often discuss our assumptions with others, creating even more venom with words.
Assuming you know everything about anything is indeed a fantasy. Assuming you completely know your bandmates or others within your creative circle is mistake. But one that can easily be set upon the right path by the simple act of asking questions.
Learn to ask and listen. Discern answers. Delve deep. Converse. Write. Chat. Often this sort of transparency is a bit frightening, especially if you’re the quiet, creative type. Learn to simply ask questions and a whole new world of understanding opens. You find yourself more centered, more in tune with others, simply because you bothered to listen with an open heart and head. If answers are hard to find, don’t make them up for yourself. Keep your ears and your soul open to the subtle nuances of communication. Answers abound without assumptions.