Are you gullible? When somebody says something do you automatically believe them? Or do you automatically disbelieve, assume they have a hidden agenda, and discount everything they say?

Both are reactions, yet a reaction, to re-act, to act again as you did last time, has little personal power. You simply defend what you already think, and put no energy into changing your life.

Change Your Life
Yes, but how? Evaluate another person's perspective and their evidence. The extra power comes when you invest your time, energy, and willingness to explore their position.

Of course, this increase in power only comes when you think for yourself. One of the hardest things to do, it's easier to adopt their opinion! But you only become wise by paying the price yourself. You need to invest your own time and energy, just as you can't get fit by delegating your exercise!

When you believe someone else, then you can be taken for a ride. Even if they are concerned about you, they also have their own best interests, which trump yours. Their context will color their opinion. Some people thrive on manipulation...

Be Skeptical rather than Gullible!
If you believe other people all the time, no matter what they say, then you're being gullible. Your predictability means you can get taken for a ride.

If you always disbelieve other people, no matter what they say, you're being cynical. You lose all the value in what they say. Again, you can be manipulated.

If you neither believe nor disbelieve what they say then you're being skeptical. Your unbiased assessment of their opinion enables you to discover the truth, and knowing the truth will change your life.

Make up Your Own Mind - the Power in Skepticism
Examine the evidence. From the outset, how can you know something? Until you've checked it out, of course you're undecided. Don't be in a hurry to pretend you know.

Start out by doubting what they say. Neither accept nor ignore it, but examine it! Will they gain by convincing you to believe their story? Are they trying to manipulate you? Do they have a hidden agenda? Do they have your best interests at heart? Investigate thoroughly.

You know this already, but are you aware this also applies to your thoughts when hijacked by the self-sabotage mechanism. Remember, you're not your mind - you're you - and your mind is simply the part of you that you use to think, in the same way that your body is the part of you that you use to carry you around.

Be skeptical, which also applies to what your mind says. Ask yourself which thoughts the mind gives you are true, and which ones are not. Learning to investigate your thoughts will change your life!

Another article you might like is #4 in this self-sabotage series: Are you Being Right - even though you're Wrong!

© Copyright worldwide Cris Baker, All rights reserved. Republishing welcomed under Creative Commons noncommercial no derivatives license preserving all links intact, so please +1 and share this widely!

Food for Thought
"Reflection is one of the most underused yet powerful tools for success."

- Richard Carlson (1961-2006), Ph.D. psychotherapist, American author

Author's Bio: 

Cris Baker has much practice in overcoming adversity, he's been screwing things up for years! Why suffer the consequences of your own mistakes? Now you can benefit from real knowledge, crucial know-how gained from his vast experience with extensive pain and suffering!

You'll find enormous joy in overcoming your self-sabotage; check out changing your context at Life Strategies to discover how to change your life!