The Premature Preview
Now we’re not talking about movie previews. That actually is a pretty cool thing.
The reference is something of much more impact and consequence than finding out the funniest or best action scene from your favorite actors upcoming feature film.
This exchange of ideas is about the concept and practice of having very pervasive and in-depth previews before important disclosures of life altering or societal impacting events.
For example, there is the juicy and provocative preview that is circulating around the major sports leagues labor contract talks between the owners and players.
At the time of this writing the NFL (American football) is struggling to steer clear of losing it's entire upcoming season to a work stoppage. I would submit this atmosphere creates a severe disadvantage for the parties to conduct their business in an efficient and focused way.
Next up to the stage, the National Basketball Association with it's verson of hide and seek regarding what will be worked out in there league!
Each side is typically battling rumor, innuendo and the buzz of gossip at the expense of moving forward in their negotiations. It further complicates the matter when the major sports news and entertainment organizations add fuel to the fire. They often broadcast full features establishing “ winners and losers” before any facts have been established.
Another area influenced by this problem of the preview is our national politics. It's not only present but ferociously dominant.
Regardless of ones party affiliation, I would argue that most people agree that our nations challenges and issues are great enough without the added burden of premature previews.
A specific example of this would be a Presidential address regarding an upcoming budget legislative session. Competing voices race to posture, position and plan their full-scale endorsement or opposition before the address had even been given.
I suggest this completely undermines the entire process and the opportunity for the best possible outcomes that would positively affect the most people.
Then there is the topic of health and science where doctors and lab test continue to push the envelope of the preview to a whole other level.
In many cases there is a tendency to elevate information alone as the preeminent reality to how all decisions should be made. Personal or family choices may be challenged or impeded because a certain percentage of possibility exist that since “A and B are known” then C will unequivocally happen.
When a diagnosis is given, for example, it is common for fear or anxiety to dominate the early decision making process. The tendency is a particular outlook due to the contstant bombardment of the preview of pharmaceutical commercials.
The major enabler to all this, of course, is our dependence on the instant information cycle, a 24 hour cable news cycle and the exponential computing power of our modern day society. It feeds into the frenzy of quick analysis and predetermined conclusions before events actually take place.
By now, you might be saying, hey StayPos, I don’t know what rock you’ve been living under but this is just the way of the world and there’s nothing we can do about it.
In many ways that’s true. However if you agree with my premise that we should leave the quick, fast and in a hurry art of the preview to Hollywood, then take note of the following suggestions.
They may help you or someone you know make decisions based on gathering quality and diverse input from sources that challenge the easy answer preview.
Return to sensibility - resist the temptation to march to the beat of crowd. There is a new phrase in the Internet sphere that’s called crowd sourcing. The concept is basically the practice of obtaining ideas or opinions from large groups of people. This notion takes on similar characteristics offline as well, in the form of opinion polls and local civic or social group agendas.
That’s fine when it comes individual projects, hobbies or things of interest that generally do not affect society as a whole. Seek to gather your own thoughts, analysis and conclusions based on some personal research.
Dig deeper for understanding what typically comes from considering more than the first and most obvious surface level buzz. Take the occasion to challenge conventional thought.
Focus on the big picture – As it relates to details and specifics, be sure to collect them, but try to see information in terms of the sum of the whole verses on it’s pieces. How accurate is the interpretation of 100-piece puzzle when you’re holding five pieces in your hand?
If you’ve ever done jury duty (and everyone should do it at least once) you know that the judge controls the courtroom. As evidence for a case is presented, there is a very slow and deliberate process that of keeping the jury focused on ALL of the evidence in order to form a complete picture of exactly what happened.
There is a deliberate series of repeated instructions issued by the judge toward the jury to disregard opinions, and pre conceived notion and come to an impartial unbiased decision based only on the facts of the case before them.
Slowing down to speed up - Although this statement seems to be a contradiction of terms, in reality it can be quite the opposite.
It actually does wonders when we want to make a decision in addition to the prevailing preview and not just because of it.
By taking time to gather ourselves and focus on throughly understanding the details of the information we have at our disposal we'll be shocked at the pace at which we come to a proper correct decision.Two very powerful phrases come to mind in support of slowing down to speed up.
- "Measure twice and cut once", which eliminates delays of doing things over.
- As taught to Special Forces within our military, “ Slow is smooth and smooth is fast “.
As we consider that previews can be a problem it’s very important to observe where comprehension and understanding fit into the equation. There are times we need to tap into our instincts or “ gut feelings” if you like, in order to make the right direction.
We should never take for granted our God given capacity to glean insights and wisdom that can lead us to finding our way rather than the quick answer of the preview.
Sometimes we may not have the luxury of slow deliberate decisions. However often times we do.
In those cases let’s use every opportunity at our disposal to resist the preview as the absolute unquestioned answer.
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