I drive by the bus station most every day. In daylight, the station blends in with so many buildings of nondescript style. But at night the station seems to come to life, glowing with activity and opportunity. I sit and watch as local FRED buses roll in and out. A Greyhound bus pulls in and passengers exit, stretching and looking for shorter rides in cabs and cars to places here in Fredericksburg, I suppose. I like to fantasize about what it might be like to just get on a bus and go, about that kind of freedom.
I don’t want to run away from my beautiful life, but I do want to embrace the freedom to change my mind.
I read this life lesson on Brain Pickings and couldn’t agree more, especially as we near Election Day.
Allow yourself the uncomfortable luxury of changing your mind. Cultivate that capacity for “negative capability.” We live in a culture where one of the greatest social disgraces is not having an opinion, so we often form our “opinions” based on superficial impressions or the borrowed ideas of others, without investing the time and thought that cultivating true conviction necessitates. We then go around asserting these donned opinions and clinging to them as anchors to our own reality. It’s enormously disorienting to simply say, “I don’t know.” But it’s infinitely more rewarding to understand than to be right — even if that means changing your mind about a topic, an ideology, or, above all, yourself.