I don’t know what new insights and understandings 2020 has in store for us. What’s clear is that you must hit it off without a few clichés that have long since become practically meaningless. Don’t try to think of a replacement for each cliché. Unnecessary clichés, like any obnoxious addiction, should find themselves outside the scope of our expression.
You can empty your shelves of old clichés and make room for more recent and effective ones. Here are some examples of automatic thoughts that can be taken off your mind and you should start practicing right now.
The first cliché – the sky’s the limit
The purpose of this sentence, if I understand it correctly, is to make us not think in terms of boundaries. Eliminate our perception of boundaries so that we constantly feel we can move forward and get farther than we seem to think. If we’re not supposed to think in terms of boundaries, then why should this word exist in our thoughts? If thought manifests reality or at least influences it to some extent, we’ll aspire to a thought that has no concept of an end to space. As soon as I mentioned the word “limit”, I’ve created a reality where boundaries exist. The last and finite part of space is supposed to be inconceivable or one that doesn’t actually exist. The sky, however, is right up there, just a short glance away. They don’t seem that far off and unreachable.
If our goal is to create conditions in which we transition smoothly into spaces that didn’t seem reachable, or weren’t even visible to us, then we shouldn’t be left clinging to the cliché of the sky as a limit.
The second cliché – thinking outside the box
The purpose of thought is to take you from the starting point through unknown paths, to a destination as close as possible to the one you imagined as you set off. The thinking process doesn’t include boxes or any other storage accessory. The choice to make up a square accessory for soaking your thoughts seems puzzling at best and unnecessary at worst.
What this sentence is trying to imply to us is that mind-storage accessories won’t get us far, when we face a challenge in which thinking is the key to solving. Using an accessory, according to the cliché, represents old and traditional ways of thinking. We don’t want to be “like them”, like the people who think in an old and traditional manner. We’re people who take risks.
The good news is that there is actually no box. And any attempt to mention it, even negatively, misses the purpose for which we set out on a thinking journey. Such an approach provides a fresh perspective and enables both brain and imagination with complete inhibited freedom.
There’s no need to put boxes in our heads when we’re thinking, just as there’s no need to look to the sky when imagining how far we can get.
The third cliché – selling ice to Eskimos
This sentence means performing an action that will make people go against their own interests. Convince them to buy something they don’t need. Some experts will attempt to convince salesmen who are looking for long-term relationships with customers not to resort to the method of selling ice to Eskimos.
The truth is, it’s quite easy to sell ice to Eskimos. Ice is a product Eskimos require and use regularly. On the one hand, the Eskimos are surrounded by a version of ice that is regularly available to them. On the other hand, it is assumed that the Eskimos, like the rest of our planet’s residents, suffer from a chronic illness that has been dubbed “capitalist fundamentalism”. The most noticeable symptom of poor people suffering from the disease is a constant effort to fulfill endless needs. The most important of these needs can be provided for free. The solution exists right there, and one should simply reach out and get it. Just as the Eskimos can reach out and get ice. Despite this surprising ease of being able to fulfill their needs, victims of the disease insist on regularly choosing paid solutions.
What can be learned from observing people who are dealing with the disease on a daily basis is that they become happy once an opportunity to spend their money on unnecessary solutions comes by. By the same token, it’s very easy to explain to an Eskimo why he should buy ice. It would be much more difficult trying to convince him into buying a product he didn’t yet have.
From now on, say “We’re all Eskimos”. We’re all happily injecting fresh capitalist-fundamentalism bacteria into our veins.
The fourth cliché – stepping out of your comfort zone
We’re all people of habits and we feel well when everything is expected and convenient. Experts explain that the most significant effect of the comfort zone on our quality of life is its ability to reduce stress and risks.
We don’t want to take risks while in our comfort zone. But you can’t progress and evolve without taking risks, right? On the other hand, if it’s so comfortable and nice in the comfort zone, then why should we step outside of it? Anyone who chooses to define himself as one who’s giving up his comfort zone probably hasn’t really found his comfort zone yet. Obviously, anyone who’s actually found and reached his comfort zone won’t choose to leave it and abandon that wonderful feeling.
So how do you grow, and evolve, and take risks, and still feel stress-free? So, the comfort zone should be enlarged, deepened, and expanded from the inside. Out of the comfortable and stress-free zone, we choose paths that make us take up more space. We acquire new skills, meet new people, and discover feelings we didn’t know. All of this happens within our safest zone, and thanks to the security provided by an environment in which we feel comfortable and are surrounded by our favorite people and habits. Thus, any possibility of exceeding the boundaries of the comfort zone will not be construed as a threat to comfort and as a cause of stress and danger. Comfort isn’t a hurdle to success.
Feel free to stay comfortable.
While writing this text, I used the following sources:
Where do we go from here?