Can we see the world from someone else’s perspective?
“The basic axiom of clinical psychology reads, ‘If you could see the world the way I see it, you’d understand why I behave the way I do,’” says Peter Kaufman, the editor of Poor Charlie’s Almanack, the Wit and Wisdom of Charlie Munger.
This week we are looking at some of Peter’s wisdom.
“Now there’s two corollaries to that axiom,” he continues. “They’re logical extensions. They’re undeniable.”
Corollary number one: “If you want to understand the way someone’s behaving, you must see the world as they see it,” he says.
Corollary number two: “If you want to change a human being’s behavior,” he says, “change how they see the world.”
This is where it gets interesting.
“Now this sounds impossible,” Peter observes.
Or, is it?
“It’s not really that hard,” he suggests. “You take a business. Most employees of a business see the world as employees. What if you could get them to see the world instead through the eyes of an owner?
“Do you think that’s going to change how they behave?” he asks.
“It totally changes how they behave,” says Peter. “Employees don’t care about waste. Owners do. Employees don’t self-police our place. Owners do.”
Reflection: Think back on a time when I changed my mind about an important topic. How did this happen?
Action: Take time today to attempt to see the world the way someone close to me does.