A friend of mine motivated to lose weight in the hopes of reducing back pain recently shared his dramatic results with others. The reactions professed predictable beliefs:
- He is missing out on important nutrients.
- He won’t keep the weight off.
- He should reward himself with occasional splurges.
Let me point out that those quick to offer such comments:
- Have no idea what he is or isn’t eating and can’t possibly know whether he is missing important nutrients.
- Assume his method is no different than their own previous efforts, which have ended in failure.
- Assume his method is based on starvation and deprivation.
- Are pretty much convinced weight gain is inevitable short of perpetual self torture.
This is a pretty sad commentary. Furthermore, these reactions are not unique to weight loss. In my experience from watching people in a wide range of situations and organizations, many are way too quick to:
- Offer opinions without sufficient information
- Use past failures to shoot down new ideas
- Resign themselves to the status quo
Imagine if, when presented with new ideas or surprising results, people responded instead with questions, openness, and optimism. Imagine if they simply said:
“Tell me more.”