Shifting Perspectives: The Most Undervalued Skill in the World | Yan Markson | TEDxGuelphU | Summary and Q&A

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September 28, 2023
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Shifting Perspectives: The Most Undervalued Skill in the World | Yan Markson | TEDxGuelphU

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Summary

In this TEDx talk, Jan Böhmermann discusses the power of perception and the value of perspective. He explains how magicians use perspective to create illusions, and how our own cognitive biases impact our perception of the world. Böhmermann argues that shifting perspectives is an undervalued skill that can lead to transformative change, and provides three important lessons for refining this skill.

Questions & Answers

Q: What is the main idea behind a paradigm shift?

A paradigm shift, whether on a global scale or within ourselves, requires a fundamental shift in perspective.

Q: How does a magician create a magic trick?

Magicians focus on creating a momentary experience in someone's mind by understanding which perspective, words, and state will create the desired experience.

Q: What happens when we see a magic trick?

When we see a magic trick, there is an information gap as we don't know how the magician achieved the trick. Our minds don't like this lack of knowledge, so we make snap assumptions based on our previous experiences, available information, patterns, preferences, and cognitive biases.

Q: How do cognitive biases affect our perception?

Cognitive biases, such as confirmation bias and blind spot bias, play a significant role in how we perceive and interpret the world. These biases are powerful and often go unnoticed, shaping our beliefs and decision-making processes.

Q: Why is shifting perspective an undervalued skill?

Shifting perspectives can fundamentally transform reality, yet it is often taken for granted and undervalued because we assume that we are already doing it. However, truly considering another viewpoint requires conscious mental and emotional energy, making it more difficult than we realize.

Q: How can we become better at shifting perspectives?

Refining the skill of shifting perspectives involves three important lessons: understanding that just because we are right, doesn't mean the other person is wrong; not making assumptions and instead making an effort to find out; and recognizing that shifting perspectives becomes easier with practice.

Q: How do magical illusions teach important lessons about perspective?

Magical illusions demonstrate that our perception is often based on patterns and assumptions rather than actual facts. The illusions show that we seek patterns and additional information to confirm our perspective, making it difficult to consider a different viewpoint.

Q: How can shifting perspectives lead to more effective communication and collaboration?

Shifting perspectives allows for more empathetic and understanding communication, leading to better collaboration and innovation. It helps build stronger communities and promotes a healthier mindset.

Q: Can you share an example of shifting perspectives in action?

Jan Böhmermann shares an example from his life where he faced resistance when proposing a keynote on magic and persuasion. Instead of dismissing the opposing viewpoint, he took the time to consider it and realized there was something to learn from it. He reframed his approach and successfully communicated his ideas as a perception strategist.

Q: How can we persuade someone to consider our perspective?

The key to persuasion is not pushing one's perspectives onto others. Instead, take the time to understand their viewpoint, acknowledge and articulate it back to them using their own words. When a person feels heard and understood, they become more mentally open to considering your perspective.

Q: Why is it important to let go of rigid perspectives?

Rigid perspectives hold us back from being the best versions of ourselves. They can lead to missed opportunities, strained relationships, and personal suffering. By challenging and shifting our own perspectives, we open ourselves up to growth and positive change.

Takeaways

Shifting perspectives is an undervalued skill that can lead to transformative change. By understanding and acknowledging the power of perception and cognitive biases, we can become more competent at shifting perspectives. Refining this skill involves recognizing that just because we are right, others may also have valid perspectives, avoiding assumptions and making an effort to find out, and practicing the skill until it becomes more natural. Shifting perspectives can result in more effective communication, collaboration, and personal growth.

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