Malcolm Gladwell's Blink
Still thinking about Malcolm Gladwell’s Blink, and how our subconscious interprets events or cues and how past experiences allow people to make informed decisions very rapidly.
How quickly do we make decisions when collecting information? Poynter EyeTrack studies say fast. When we understand the format, we can move much quicker.
Gladwell describes “thin-slicing” or our ability to gauge what is really important from a very narrow period of experience. Yes, spontaneous decisions are often as good as — or even better than — carefully planned and considered ones.
In an age of information overload, experts often make better decisions with snap judgments than with volumes of analysis.
How much is too much information?
It is a difficult time to gain perspective.
With a hyper flow of negative news, we lurch from one point to the next trying to stay above the torrent.
There is stress buried within comments made online – the false bravado, the flippancy, the sarcasm that belies lifestyles untethered from foundations.
Johnny Cyreous contemplates Anne Frank’s situation and her quote: “Look at all the beauty still around you and be happy.”
Yes, it is a good time to be alive while possessing the opportunity to share information and help others make sense of this chaotic transition. More conversation and information exists than at any time in history. This unending stream of solutions and affirmations is a blessing.
There is another quote that goes, “Be kinder than necessary, for everyone you meet is fighting some kind of battle.” “Be kinder than necessary” are the words that jump out at me there. You see in this battle that exists inside ourselves to grow, to mature, we often dole out kindness, and love, in measures that we deem as fair, as if there were a shortage of these behaviors or a given amount we need worry about less we run out. No – kindness is always in plentiful supply for us to use if we just want to.
There are peaks and valleys to personal and collective misfortune. We are very shortsighted when focusing on such small blocks of time. This time shall pass and we will be left with traces of ideas to ponder when beauty is again amplified.
Make each word count.
Charlie Brown tree
A family member leaves an Eckhart Tolle book, which ends up in my multiple book rotation. Currently, Gray Ghosts and Rebel Raiders anchors the bedroom, My Silent War, by Kim Philby can be found in the kitchen, and Tolle ended up in the mudroom. Usually, a subhead like “Awaking to Your Life’s Purpose” would trigger a cringe and drop reflex. But skipping forward we find this:
Many people don’t realize until they are on their deathbed and everything external falls away that no thing ever had anything to do with who they are. In the proximity of death, the whole concept of ownership stands revealed as ultimately meaningless. In the last moments of their life, they then also realize that while they were looking throughout their lives for a more complete sense of self, what they were really looking for, their Being, had actually always been there, but had been largely obscured by their identification with things, which ultimately means identification with their mind.
Lately, my life has been bookmarked by my wife’s parents quickly declining toward death, and my newspaper web position being eliminated just before Christmas. But I look at this photo of the Charlie Brown tree and remember a quiet gathering with friends during the holiday.
All things depreciate all of the time. You begin and end with absolutely nothing, but the patterns, ideas and love you have shared.