Are you marinating in conventional wisdom?
“Thinking for yourself means finding yourself, finding your own reality. Here’s the other problem with Facebook and Twitter and even The New York Times.
When you expose yourself to those things, especially in the constant way that people do now—older people as well as younger people—you are continuously bombarding yourself with a stream of other people’s thoughts.
You are marinating yourself in the conventional wisdom.
In other people’s reality: for others, not for yourself. You are creating a cacophony in which it is impossible to hear your own voice, whether it’s yourself you’re thinking about or anything else.”
The above quote is from a lecture delivered by author and essayist William Deresiewicz to the plebe class at the United States Military Academy at West Point, entitled Solitude and Leadership
The concept of thinking for yourself has been reflected in a recent post BDMs. Do people trust you? (ie. Albert Schweitzer’s comment: ‘Men don’t think’) and in the following prior posts.
To combat the marinating effect I have designated a 30-60 minute slot of time on Friday afternoon to reflect on my business and my life – without access to the internet, with a pen and paper.
It’s early days but I believe this reflection time has helped – ground me, hear my own voice and quiet the ‘cacophony’.
Your HOW to apply/CALL to action for this post: Consider if you are marinating in the conventional wisdom? If you are, consider if you could reduce your Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn etc. time, and increase your solitary thinking and reflection time.