Find Common Ground

It’s been an incredible few weeks. I’m in the process of rebranding and coming up with a host of digital solutions for people who are interested in living a more empowered life. Amidst this chaotic process, I have been attending Commons church in Kensington, and I’m really enjoying it. There’s been a lot of value that come from the sermons, namely this quote really stood out to me:

“For [Christ] himself is our peace, who has made the two groups one and has destroyed the barrier, the dividing wall of hostility” – Ephesians 2:14

I actually found myself in an argument with someone the other week, and I thought of this quote, all we were doing was focusing on our differences. The barrier had been put up.

In reading The Influential Mind, I understand that when people have contrasting views, one of the most powerful things you can do is find common ground; an outcome for the greater good. Finding common ground is an incredible way to dissolve the barrier and work together towards an objective or a goal.

So if you find yourself at odds with another, or even with yourself – find common ground. The synergy, the power of working together is a deep driver that comes from our social nature.

suspending judgement

Suspend Your Judgement

“To become good at anything you have to know how to apply basic principles. To become great at it, you have to know when to violate those principles” – Garry Kasparov

Thinking outside the box requires a special technique called epoché – a suspension of judgement before you act.

We are often subjected to various forms of entertainment throughout the day.  I find it odd that we are often the ones being entertained however, as we receive various emotional and visceral reactions to the stimuli around us.

How do we take charge, reverse the roles, and become the entertainer in our own lives?  How do we become the master and entertain the ideas or circumstances that are presented to us?

The truth is, we can tease out a good idea from a contextual situation with the maturity, substance, and panache if we do it correctly.

Suspending judgement, known as epoché, was derived from ancient Greek philosophers.  Epoché is a way to come up with deeper solution to a burning question or situation.  This idea of suspended judgement comes up throughout the history of philosophy and undoubtedly is a powerful tool for critical thinking.

suspending judgement

I noticed this principle come to the forefront when playing a game of chess, I suspended my judgement on a move I was about to make – and asked “what else?”

“What am I not seeing?  Is there another way to look at this?” I challenged my brain to entertain the thought, idea, or context of the situation I was presented with – the game board – I suspended for moment and then I acted – creating a check mate I did not originally see.

Don’t let the final act fool you.  The anticipation can entice you down the wrong road if you are not paying attention.  Remember, you have the power to think critically in that little minuscule place between presentation and action – use it!