Preconceived Ideas


Hey guys. Welcome to another week of the Wednesday Lunchtime Blog. Thanks for joining. Today, I’d like to talk about preconceived ideas and some of my experiences that have come to the forefront of my mind which will hopefully trigger something for you.


I’m now coming to the end of my Psychology studies and it has been a very enlightening process as it has helped me understand and break down elements of my life and processes which, it turns out, all correlate with each other. So today, the subject of preconceived ideas is a really interesting area that I’d like to touch base on and It’s one I’ve actually wanted to talk about for a while.


In the last unit of my studies, I was watching a presentation by Professor Rosling, a Swedish professor who has been researching where the world is headed in terms of population. You can watch the presentation here. It’s interesting and what immediately captured my attention was when he said, “It’s not about having the knowledge, it’s about the preconceived ideas we seem to have”. It’s so true, isn’t it? I’m not saying it’s always the case but it certainly plays a big factor and it made me think a lot about my own decisions and choices and the things I think I know but actually don’t. I’m guilty of that. It made me really think about what preconceived ideas are and how they affect me. I think some of my decision-making in life has been quite poor. I have, as always, also done a Alex Over Sessions video on this subject which will be coming up later.


In the past, I think my main problem in this aspect has been that I made certain choices to please others rather than myself. And I feel the preconceived idea really comes into that. It’s about learning to say ‘no’ to things without feeling guilty. There’s a lot of talk about the fear of missing out, they call it ‘FOMO’. In FOMO, you have these preconceived ideas that if you say no to something, you think people will refer to you as ‘flaky’. But actually, your consciousness is not at the forefront to help yourself first before anything else. That’s where I think I have gone wrong a lot in the past and it’s only really occurred to me recently. But that’s a great reflection, a good understanding and it’s just life. You just have to go through these stages. As long as you’re aware of those things and the complexities – I’ve talk about complexities before and how we over-complicate things that are fundamentally simple.


Professor Rosling was talking about an interesting study called The Ignorant British Study. In the study, British people were asked to predict whether people in Bangladesh were more likely to have 2, 3 or 4 children. The British people predicted and had this preconceived idea that they’d be more likely to have 4 children. But in actual fact, the average number of children people had in Bangladesh was actually 2. And that was the same for a lot of the world but that was just a great example of preconceived ideas. It’s having that opinion formed in your mind without any kind of evidence and I think that’s where we often go wrong. We all think we know about a lot of things but in reality, we know very little. I’m not saying that’s the case for everyone because there is a lot of people who do learn and acknowledge a lot of things because they want to know about certain subjects or they don’t comment on things they don’t know enough about, but if they do, they’re happy to discuss it.


So, that’s what I’ve been trying to do within these blogs and sessions, and that’s why I try to discuss subjects based on experience and what I’ve been learning, without using my preconceived ideas and spreading false information. I’ve been quite conscious of this since Day 1. I don’t want to talk about something if I don’t know enough about it. If I don’t know enough about something, I will say I don’t feel comfortable talking about it.


I think that’s really really challenging and it goes for a lot of us. So, I’ll leave you on that note. The Alex Over Session on this subject will be up later and the extended discussion on The U Turn Podcast will also be available later today.


See you next week!