Do you know open-minded people live in a different reality?
There is a difference between open-minded and close-minded people in terms of – how they perceive the world.
According to a recent study, open-minded people have a different outlook on life. The study also found that openness and mood impact how you visually perceive the world.
The quality of openness you have – determines the kind of reality you live in. According to the study results, most open-minded people live in a completely different reality when compared to those who are close-minded people.
This research showed that your thought process, how you feel and behave changes your outlook on life as well as influence how you perceive reality at work. Your thinking pattern, feelings and actions also change how you relate with friends and folks and romantic partners. Besides, your personality and life experiences also affect various aspects like your happiness, physical, emotional and mental health.
What exactly is openness?
Well, openness is all about keeping an open mind about everything in life. Open-minded people engage in experimenting with new stuff, meeting new people, exploring new places to enhance their knowledge and expand their mind. Open-minded people push the boundaries of what they know and have.
Anna Antinori along with his team of researchers recruited 123 University of Melbourne undergraduates of various backgrounds (all of them had normal or corrected to normal vision) and gave them a big five personality test. Their character and views were measured focusing on five categories of personality –
- Agreeableness and
- The ability to keep an open mind to new experiences
Participants who score high in openness are less likely to experience “inattentional blindness.” The researchers also tested which participants experienced a visual perception phenomenon called “binocular rivalry.”
This phenomenon occurs when dissimilar monocular stimuli are presented to corresponding retinal locations of the two eyes. It means each eye is shown a different image. In this study, participants were shown a red patch in one eye and a green patch to another.
Most people switch back and forwards between the two incompatible images, as the brain can only perceive one at a time. However, some people merge the two images into a unified red-green patch. Open-minded people can look at both patches together and they were the ones who scored higher on openness!
Why open-minded people are different?
Researchers found that open-minded people have flexible cognition, so they can grasp more information than the average person. They are incredibly curious and creative. They are self-motivated to explore the world and engage with possibilities. Hence, they can easily create new mental routes inside their head.
New ideas emerge faster in open-minded people than those who are close to new experiences. The quest to – learn and explore the world and willingness to enlarge experiences – enhances the breadth, depth, and permeability of consciousness. This broadens the world an open-minded people live in.
Open-mindedness helps you attain higher planes of thought creating a different structure of reality. Your brain is in a calmer resting state and can see a bigger picture with new elements, which normal people would not perceive.
Thus, open-minded people are more likely to experience the world differently to the average person. These results are supported by another old study.
On the other hand, close-minded people don’t explore alternative realities in life and work. So, they take a longer time to generate new ideas and make significant improvements in life.
Unlike open-minded people, close-minded ones don’t want their ideas challenged. If you disagree with them, they get frustrated. Because they are not curious enough to figure out other reasons or different thinking patterns that may have caused disagreement, according to Ray Dalio, author of “Principles: Life and Work”.
Dalio encourages people to develop the art of thoughtful disagreement. Your goal shouldn’t be proving yourself right all the time. But, learn to appreciate people who believe in opposite things. You must talk to them and find out which view is true and decide what to do about it.
By trying to establish your point, you are just narrowing your perspective. But, if you try to understand others you can win a chance to correct yourself. Don’t try to dismiss other people’s thoughts no matter how unappealing or silly it is. Considering different perspective or ideas will help you see things accurately.
In F. Scott Fitzgerald words, you must be able to hold two opposed ideas in mind at the same time and still retain the ability to function. In doing so you are acting mindfully, which improves your realities.
When you practice open-mindedness, you get to learn new ways to better yourself, and progress in life and at work. Hence, you become happier and healthier over time. Also, you tend to help your near and dear ones to become better versions of themselves.
How to practice open-mindedness?
All you need is to be ready for new possibilities and opportunities. Think of how you can improve your views and opinions. Look for ways to broaden, and expand your realities. Whenever you do any task, ask yourself, how to do it better? Doing the same old thing and expecting better results is foolishness! Try to approach the same problem from a different angle. Embrace new experiences, be more creative and add an extra effort to liven up the way you do things.