The Error of Familiarity

The Error of Familiarity

A common mistake many make on the road to success.
The longer I live the more I realize that the best life lessons come from just everyday activities. I was coming from a meeting and saw my bank nearby. I thought to myself, “You might as well go to the ATM and get some cash while you’re nearby”.

A few moments provided a pivotal point that I’ll share with you today. When it comes to achieving what you want out of life, are you simply in the wrong line?

There were two lines at this bank and I went into the one that only had one vehicle. After several minutes I thought to myself, “They are moving rather slowly for an ATM”. You see, I was used to the quickness of the ATM machine line, especially at the banks that I usually go to.  

When I looked up after a few minutes, my attention had been focused elsewhere, I realized that I wasn’t in the ATM line at all. At this particular branch, the layout placed the ATM in an obscure spot just ahead. I was so use to the layout at the branches I typically patronize that I made the common “error of familiarity”.

Are your expectations, and thereby actions in life, driven by “familiarity”? While this is common and not necessarily a bad thing, it can cause problems when misapplied.

Because of our familiarity in relationships, people, places and things, we lead by what we have come to expect. We will wait on something and get frustrated when things don’t happen the way “we believe they should”. But sometimes, those expectations are unreasonable, especially when we bring the familiar into new/unfamiliar environment, situations and circumstances. A change in environment – whether that pertains to a person, place or thing -means there is often a change in what is produced.

While it’s nice to believe that it is reasonable to enter a new relationship and expect the same things you desired in previous ones, the opposite is true: this is unrealistic. Each person, place and thing, has its own uniqueness and set of expectations.

Are you simply in the wrong line of life for the things you desire? Are you committing the “error of familiarity” when navigating new environments, persons, places or things?

Sometimes, you need to look up, focus and just pull ahead AFTER examining your new territory. While you have free will to have expectations, it is not realistic to expect every environment to yield to them.

Alesha Brown, The Joy Guru
Publisher|Best Selling Author|Transformational Speaker
CEO, Alesha Brown LLC     

"It's never too late to edit your life and I can help!"

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