Have You Ever Changed Your Mind...

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous' started by thestrangequark, Jun 17, 2013.

  1. Kestra

    Kestra Admiral Premium Member

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    I think I'm like many others here where I haven't done some fast, extreme switch but rather my ideas and opinions have evolved over the years. I didn't have strong opinions when I was younger and I've gotten a little more certain about some of them, and in social issues I have definitely grown more strongly liberal.

    Many people are mentioning religion here. I was raised in a theist household, I've gone through periods where I experimented with atheism, and these days I'm a pretty comfortable theist.

    Growing up I had a narrower view of not just myself but also what my life would be like. I thought I had to follow a specific script and was always really hard on myself when I failed to. These days I'm reasonably comfortable with the fact that life can change in an instant. While I'm sure there are many challenges ahead, I don't have such strict expectations for myself. I think this attitude made it easier to deal with my marriage ending because I didn't instantly go into "My life is over" mode.

    The area with the most extreme change would be just being less judgmental in general. I think that posting on internet forums is directly involved in that. In real life I tend to hang out with a more conservative group of people and we can often be superficial. Meeting people online opened up my social interactions with groups that I would never have really crossed paths with in real life. As a result, I found my own opinions changing but also I sometimes say things in real life now when someone mocks someone else. I probably don't speak up as much as I should, but I'll get there. I think it's a good improvement and it just feels right to me, to be more understanding and less judgmental.
     
  2. Peach Wookiee

    Peach Wookiee Cuddly Mod of Doom Moderator

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    ^Kestra, I believe you summed up some of what I was going to say rather well. Change for me as well has been somewhat more gentle.

    I've found it takes experience to change perceptions about big things. Marriage equality... I can't say honestly that I was always supportive of it, but now, I regard it as necessary. Why have civil unions in the US when it'll be marriage anyway? It's silly not to call it what it's going to be.

    As for religion... I've found my views weren't that rigid to begin with. Some of my family was more flexible and didn't force me to view one exact way. I'm an unusual person in that regard, looking for similarities between religious faiths rather than so many differences that I know are there. I think that truly started when I was in seventh grade.
     
  3. Tora Ziyal

    Tora Ziyal Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    TSQ, great topic! J. Allen and others, thank you for telling your stories.

    Pthalo BlueMoon, I officially declare you the TrekBBS's oldest living member! ;)
     
  4. Mr. Laser Beam

    Mr. Laser Beam Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    I think I also used to be against universal health care. Now I've done a total flip-flop and am now in favor of a flat-out balls-to-the-wall single-payer system. That's as socialist as I dare get!
     
  5. jayceee

    jayceee Commander Red Shirt

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    I learned this very quickly when I was a kid.

    As a kid, I was somewhat of a compulsive fibber, where I was led to believe I was getting away with everything. My parents didn't confront me directly on it, but pretty much it seemed like I was being thwarted by them indirectly on just about everything I was fibbing about. When I was older as an adult, my parents eventually told me outright they knew all along what I was doing, but didn't want to directly rain on my parade. (Essentially they were practicing some form of "reverse psychology" on me. I had to figure things out on my own through repeated failures).

    As a byproduct of all this, from an early age I was able to figure out the likelihood of whether somebody was lying to me in person, and I became skeptical of stuff anybody said to me. Largely in my own mind, I was always thinking: "Is this the type of lie (or omission) I would have said in this situation?"

    When I was a teenager and young adult, I was frequently confronting acquaintances, friends, speakers, teachers, etc ... on what they said, if I suspected they were being misleading or outright lying. (This was the in days before the internet and google). It shouldn't be too surprising that I was a very unpopular person, and didn't have many close friends when I was younger.

    Through adulthood, it took me a long time to eventually figure out how human behavior and etiquette functioned in practice. Essentially I gradually went from being a "Sheldon Cooper" know-it-all type person (from the tv show "Big Bang Theory"), to behaving as a "normal" and semi-inconspicuous person.

    I eventually came to the realization that many people over age 30 generally do not change their minds easily. So these days, I don't even bother attempting to confront somebody on whether they are being misleading or outright wrong. It is largely an exercise in futility. Other people have to figure things out for themselves on their own.


    Over the last few years of going through an extended mid-life crisis, I've been starting to see the wisdom of how my parents raised me.
     
  6. teacake

    teacake Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    What would be an example of someone being misleading or wrong that you wouldn't confront? I'm missing something here because there are certainly ways to tell someone they are incorrect without making it about confronting them.
     
  7. Harvey

    Harvey Admiral Admiral

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    As a teenager, I supported the death penalty. It seemed the best way to get rid of unwanted criminals to me at the time.

    Since then, I've switched from being uncommitted to any religious view to being an atheist, which has altered my views on the morality of ending a life. Perhaps even more important on this issue, I've learned that (unlike the promises of many politicians) the death penalty is an ineffective deterrent, a more expensive sentence than life in prison, and an unequally applied sentence in terms of race and class.

    Yeah, I'm certainly against it now.
     
  8. jayceee

    jayceee Commander Red Shirt

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    Every now and then, I have friends who attempt to talk me into investing in a new business, some real estate, other investments, etc ...

    When I was younger, I would have wasted their time by challenging their business plan, estimated numbers, etc ... by firing off repeated volleys of hard questions. In the past, I generally saw it as the equivalent of an intellectual sparring match or "bloodsport". (In the end after all the sparring, I would still say no to their requests).

    Today, I will just let them know right away that I am not interested at all. I generally now stop myself from entering a "Sheldon Cooper" state of mind, and cut to the chase immediately.
     
  9. RandyS

    RandyS Vice Admiral Admiral

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    ALOT less, yes. Me too.

    Also, as I got older, I found my beliefs turning away from liberalism and more conservitive. I'm now convinced that it's an age thing. I actually saw it happen to the adults in my life when I was growing up, but, naturally, being young, I didn't understand what I was seeing. But once it started happening to me, I understood it completely.

    Alot of younger folks I meet make the mistake of thinking this means that I started out as a Democrat and am now a Republican. Not true. I've never had much faith in EITHER party, and I can't imagine that I ever will.
     
  10. teacake

    teacake Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    I still troll them if it's Amway. But otherwise, I get what you're saying. Better things to do with time.
     
  11. thestrangequark

    thestrangequark Admiral Admiral

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    On the flip side, have you ever considered the problem may not be with them, but with your approach? People don't like being wrong, even when they are wrong, and they don't generally like confrontation, especially when what you're asking them to confront is reality. It's a quirk of psychology that attacking someone's firmly held beliefs or ideas, even with a solid argument, good evidence, and the absolute truth on your side, will only serve to reinforce their wrong beliefs. If you want to convince someone, you need to feed the evidence and the arguments to them subtly. You need to get them curious, and get them thinking, and allow them to come to the conclusion themselves so they won't have to suffer defeat. It's hard, but I managed it once! And she was over thirty.
     
  12. jayceee

    jayceee Commander Red Shirt

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    With MLM types many years ago, the first thing I would say is to send me a copy of their federal tax returns from the previous five years. Everyone one of them said no. (Obviously). In response I said I wasn't interested at all. :evil:

    Today, I just tell them that I am not interested at all from the very start. I also immediately say right away that this will never be a topic of discussion again with me. (So far, they have not ever asked me again).
     
  13. teacake

    teacake Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    Yes I always ask for an exact figure for how much they made, or when it was friends newly sucked I would tell them to ask their upline indoctrinator to tell them how much they actually made in the last year. I've said if they can tell me this I will listen to their spiel. I've never had to listen to it. This was almost a monthly event for me years ago but I think the MLM thing has run itself into the ground these days.
     
  14. Mr. Laser Beam

    Mr. Laser Beam Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    ^ "Friends newly sucked" and "upline indoctrinator". I'm not sure which of those phrases wins more internets, but they're right up there. :techman:
     
  15. jayceee

    jayceee Commander Red Shirt

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    When I was younger, my intentions were rarely to ever change people's minds. My underlying intention was to get under the person's skin.
     
  16. HaventGotALife

    HaventGotALife Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Thank you for the hug. A hug back to you! It is a good idea for a thread. I shared more with that open-ended question than I ever thought I would share online. It's nice that it was well-received, not ridiculed.
     
  17. Mr. Laser Beam

    Mr. Laser Beam Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    My relationship with Christ is one thing I will NOT change. Except to make it better. :techman:
     
    Last edited: Jun 18, 2013
  18. thestrangequark

    thestrangequark Admiral Admiral

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    Then your conclusion that people over thirty do not change their minds is based on false premis!

    I'm happy people are finding the thread valuable, I know I'm learning a lot by reading it.
     
  19. Coloratura

    Coloratura Snuggle Princess Premium Member

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    I know what you mean. I don't talk to my extended family very much, about anything (they like to argue), but here I'll open up to just about anything!

    Ours was fine for a while, but then he said that he needed some space, so I gave him the universe. Messiahs love universes. ;)
     
  20. teacake

    teacake Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    People change their minds over 30 all the time. It's called a midlife crisis.