Just mere life is not victory, just mere death is not defeat.

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Sunday Evening Thoughts

While I have posted about this topic before I wanted to touch on it again, and I want to a line from Dr. Jordan Peterson because he explains it very well in this 10 minute video, you can get the gist from the first 3 or so minutes if you don't want to listen to the whole thing.

What does this mean to you reading this?  Do not let mere words offend you and understand that the person you are speaking to may be more knowledgeable than you on a specific topic.  Do not go project, assume, interject or infer bias or personal inflection in what you read, or what you hear from a person you may not know about a particular topic.  If someone is taking the time to explain something to you, sit there and accept it.  Do not wait for your turn to talk, for your turn to respond, for your turn to show off your personal (google) knowledge.  If you have nothing to add be content with that fact and accept it, as it makes for a much better, and much more honest, conversation about a topic you may not know anything tangible about.  Accept that you may not have anything to add and that your personal opinion is completely worthless, also that everything you have to say on this particular topic may be stupid.  Be honest with yourself, with your experience and your own ego.  Stroking your ego is not going to make more experienced or somehow more desirable as a person to speak to about a particular topic.

Whenever reading anything posted online, understand that unless you have direct personal experience with this person, and understand their mannerisms, then you will be injecting your personal bias and inflection into those typed words.  They are words after all, written without a single bit of inflection and as such you should not add any as you are tainting the concepts inappropriately.  Do not let yourself have an emotional reaction to something which has, by definition, zero emotional content.  Do not let mere words hurt you, because that's really weak, and you should strive not to be really weak.

Whenever you come across someone who makes statements about a topic you may be familiar with and those statements induce an emotional reaction in you, take a moment and think.  Are they  challenging everything you've heard or seen on a specific topic because they are trying to upset you specifically, are you taking it personally then? Likely they are just speaking from personal experience, maybe they are lying through their teeth.  The fact remains that you should understand that it may very well be true and that what you know may not have been founded in reality, in logic.  Think about the various circumstances where that could occur and how it could easily be misunderstood by you if you allowed your emotional reaction to take control, blinding you to the facts of the conversation.

Do not allow yourself to be pushed in the wrong direction through emotional responses.  Take a moment, think logically about the information and understand that there is a good possibility that you are being given information you'd likely never received without being challenged and that being offended is the wrong response.