Jumping to conclusions in a time of change

In a churning world, things no longer work the way they used to. Politics, coronavirus, and wildfires are just three very recent examples.

So when we jump to conclusions in a churning world we are likely to create problems for ourselves.

These problems aren’t necessarily to do with whether we turn out to be right or wrong. The problem is that jumping to conclusions makes us lazy. It stops us checking whether we really understand the situation. It stops us preparing for the unexpected. And it stops us taking the extra steps that would have increased our chances of getting the outcomes we want.

Avoiding all this is surprisingly easy. It’s not rocket science. We only need to do four things:

  1. Check whether we are making any of the eight potential mis-blinks
  2. Consider what other interpretations might also be possible
  3. Get clearer on what outcome we want and why 
  4. Take appropriate actions to achieve our upsides and manage our downsides

We might still end up doing the same things and the outcome might still be the same. And we might still be surprised by what happens. But by not jumping to conclusions, by getting clearer on what we really want, and by ensuring that we truly have done everything we could, we increase our inspiration and enthusiasm, we give ourselves us the best chances of achieving the outcomes we seek, and we give ourselves the maximum flexibility if things still don’t turn out the way we wanted.

All of which makes us more antifragile.

Have you ever jumped to a conclusion that turned out to be wrong? What were the consequences? Is it worth checking whether you are jumping to any conclusions now?


Adapted from Inner Leadership: a framework and tools for building inspiration in times of change.

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Photo By rippchenmitkraut66 via StockPholio.net

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