What Is Your Controversial Idea?

We all have idea about ourselves, our society, and how the future will play out. Are any of your ideas controversial in nature?

It can be very easy — almost too easy, in fact — to agree with people around you. Whether it comes from the media we consume, our social media feed, or conversations we have with friends or family, thinking in lockstep is quite common.

On the other hand, holding an opinion or an idea that is controversial, particularly when people you know and respect disagree with you, can be extremely difficult. Even if your thoughts are logical and consistent, peer pressure can be a powerful force to overcome.

There is an element of human psychology that sometimes arises, however. We can also be very contrary creatures, and sometimes when everyone disagrees with you, you may be more likely to become stubborn and refuse to change your position.


Listen to a podcast where Michael and Lee discuss a related question: ‘What beliefs do you have that might be wrong?’ We also discuss a bonus question: ‘What makes a place feel like home?’


One recurring problem with controversial ideas is that they may veer dangerously close to conspiracy theories. Even if you don’t think of it that way, others may equate something controversial with something crackpot. And frankly, sometimes it is hard to tell the difference.

And yet, progress is made because people have had an idea that started out being different from the majority of people around them. Gradually, however, additional evidence may be gathered. Ideas evolve. What was once controversial may eventually become mainstream.

Do you have any ideas that you consider controversial? Why do you believe them, and how do you defend them to others?

Related questions: What do you believe? What beliefs do you have that might be wrong? How much of our thoughts are our own? How are you a non-conformist?

Are There Beliefs About Yourself You’ve Had To Let Go?

It is a simple fact that people change and grow over time. Have you ever been aware of your personal change, and jettisoned beliefs about yourself?

These changes can be something simple and straightforward. For example, later in life you might grow to like a food that you couldn’t stand before. Your belief about yourself (i.e. “I don’t like tomatoes”) might need to be amended, or even dropped.

But sometimes, the belief in question might be quite abstract, or even key to your concept of self. As you age, cornerstone beliefs, like political party, religious affiliation, or career aspirations might need to be tweaked. Some might even require a complete overhaul.


Listen to a podcast where Michael and Lee discuss a related question: ‘What beliefs do you have that might be wrong?’ We also discuss a bonus question: ‘What makes a place feel like home?’


An extreme example of this would be a belief that you felt was central to who you are, one that you swore repeatedly would never change. And yet, over time, as your experiences increase, you attitude might shift subtly at first, and eventually become completely different. Has this ever happened to you?

Introspection can be a valuable tool in your mental health tool kit. Knowing what you believe in, and periodically reviewing those beliefs, can lead to your being honest with yourself. It might also lead to a mo0re fulfilled life.

Do you have any beliefs about yourself that have changed over time?

Related questions: How have you changed? What makes you you? How can we encourage meaningful conversation? What is necessary to change your mind?

 

 

How Do You Maintain Hope?

Maintaining hope is an important skill for anyone. When bad things happen — and they are bound to eventually — hope keeps us going. When times are particularly difficult, how can you avoid becoming despondent? How do you maintain hope?

A positive attitude allows for a better life. It can give you confidence, and in turn that confidence allows yo top make changes that will hopefully be for the better. Improvement in your life circumstances is dependent on efforts to improve. And those efforts, in turn, depend on trusting that things can, in fact, get better.


Listen to a podcast where Michael and Lee discuss a related question: ‘What are you optimistic about?’ We also discuss a bonus question: ‘What makes a tradition?’


In that regard, hope is one of the most important feelings. It is through hopefulness that all else becomes possible.

However, there are times when it is very difficult to stay hopeful. In the face of seemingly insurmountable odds, for example. Or after a long series of setbacks. If you don’t see much growth or improvement, it is easy to become cynical.

So what can you do to combat this? What behaviors or techniques can you employ to keep hope alive in seemingly hopeless times?

Related questions: Why should we be hopeful? How can we maintain wonder? Optimistic or pessimistic? What are you optimistic about? When do you need inspiration?