People Who Express Their Opinion As If It Were The “universal Truth”

People who express their opinion as if it were the "universal truth"

Some people just love to be free to speak up. People who want to help others by telling them what they think they need to hear. They are those people with big egos who sell us their opinion as universal truth. And they always speak in a condescending, critical tone.

What advice do you give us? For example, “It’s obvious that you always choose the wrong guys. I tell you, he will cheat you at the first opportunity. ”  Or “ It is for your good. Just get the idea out of your head, that’s too much for you. ”  And of course ” These things only happen to you, because you just have a weak personality. “

“We should not confuse the truth with the opinion of the people.”

Jean Cocteau

Many of us have heard such things before. It is important to remember that while we have a right to speak our minds, it is wrong to use it to hurt, humiliate, or degrade someone. We also need to know that opinions are only personal views. They are simply reflections of the emotional and cognitive world of the person speaking.

But, as Leonardo Da Vinci said, the greatest mistake a person can make is believing in what is wrong with one’s own opinion. For there is no greater ignorance than thinking that one’s personal appraisal of the world corresponds to a universal truth.

A whole jungle out of a lion's mouth

Opinions can become fetters

Opinions can get in the way of us. Think about it for a moment: when someone gives their opinion about us, they are doing so based on their perception of reality, their experiences, and their values.

All of this is normal, we can understand it. But we can also apply to this process what psychologists call “attentional bias” or “confirmation bias”. Distortion of attention and the tendency to confirm can be seen in people who only perceive what they want to see. People who limit themselves to only looking at certain aspects in order to make imprecise and extremely distorted judgments.

Likewise, rational decision theory says that much of the heuristics we use to move from thoughts to opinions is based solely on our intuition and simple judgments, which leads to errors. This explains why certain people act out their limitations to draw questionable conclusions, such as that women are inherently weak, that children need a hard hand, or even that anyone who practices a religion other than me is a terrorist.

We should therefore be very careful in the presence of people who present their opinions as unique and exclusive, as universal truth. Because nothing defines someone like the comments they make.

Abstract image of a woman

On the other hand, you have probably already observed how someone who takes these resolute and harmful opinions tends to react very negatively or even to see it as a personal attack if someone tries his universal truth with logical, comprehensible principles, to refute.

He will not accept this logic, because mental shackles create a very tight thought construct. In fact, there are a ton of people who refer to these types of people as living trolls – people who are constantly making unsolicited, provocative comments.

If you want to give your opinion, please let it be a useful one

We can and should all express our opinions about people, things and situations. But we have to do this from a position of respect, not a throne of insolence. It doesn’t matter if our opinion is honest, but it hurts; when it is useful but criticized. It must be conveyed with respect. And at the right time.

Opinions that leak unfiltered from the amygdala are rarely useful. The amygdala is the place where emotions such as fear, hate or anger sit. This is how we give an opinion with the intention of hurting others, pigeon-holing them, or looking down on them. We do this with an explicit desire to rise above others.

“Don’t hurt others with what actually hurts you.”


Sphinx in a fantasy land

On the other hand, our society loves strong opinions. But that is exactly what is often hardly justified. Think of prompts like “vote for me or the world is in chaos!” , “Buy this product and you will be happy!” Or “get thinner, dress like this, do this and you will have social success!”. We have to learn to think differently.

Learn to detach yourself from your opinions, to analyze them from a distance. That way you can see what else is out there. For example, don’t tell your friend that the dress she’s wearing looks terrible. First, ask yourself if she’s wearing it because she likes it. Or because she simply has different tastes than you. And finally, whether it makes sense to tell her what you think about her dress.

Recall the useful three filters of truth that Aristotle described:

  • Are you absolutely sure that what you are trying to say is true?
  • Is it a good thing?
  • Will this statement be helpful to the other person?

If the answer to all of these three questions is yes, then share yourself. Take the step to expressing your opinion in order to improve our coexistence, interact respectfully, and create stronger relationships.

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