We often confuse questionable information with the irrefutable truth. This affects the way we think about ourselves, others and the world. The root cause of this is we have difficulty separating facts from opinions. The goal of this article is to investigate the case of Fact vs Opinion, why is it important to know the difference between them and how can this knowledge shape the way you think about yourself.
Fact vs Opinion
A fact is a statement, that can be proven true. They are supported by evidence and often backed up with scientific data. They are objective. Here are some facts:
- Bill Clinton was the US president in 1996.
- The boiling point of distilled water is 100°C.
- The Earth has one moon.
Opinions are personal views, values or beliefs. They are subjective and driven by emotions. By its nature, an opinion can be wrong but often believed to be true. Here are some opinions:
- John’s mom makes the best pancakes in the world!
- All politicians are liars.
- I have no musical talents.
Why is it important to know this difference?
We may often come across negative ideas no matter if they come from the outside or from the inside. These ideas often take the forms of limitations such as “You are so bad at basketball” or “I’m no good at drawing”. Such negative thoughts often have a big impact on our thinking and the way we think about ourselves. (Studies show, that negative information weights more on the brain than positive.)
When we face sentences like this it is very important to separate facts from opinions. Most of the time it’ll be an opinion and just like we mentioned before opinions are – by nature – often wrong. Don’t treat opinions as facts. It is very important to treat them differently. Anyone can have an opinion, but saying them out loud doesn’t make them true.
We are not saying to reject everyone’s opinion and never treat them as valuable information. It is wise to reconsider when your business mentor says, that you are taking a big risk with your next move. It is wise not to listen when people are judging you by your mistakes and failures. Constructive criticism is an opinion that is always welcome.
How can this knowledge help you?
We often treat opinions as facts. When we do, we usually create an obstacle for ourselves that is just a road block for the mind. When this is the case there’s no physical reason that stops us, but the mental obstacle.
The next time someone says something negative about you or when a limiting idea pops into your head, ask yourself: “Should I treat this information as a fact, or as an opinion?”. When you clarify this and treat the idea properly, opinions will have a lesser effect on you.
All of our limiting beliefs are just opinions of ourselves. If you’d like to know more about them and how to get rid of them read this article. You’ll think differently about your abilities, talents and potential as you identify, understand and get rid of these beliefs.
Treat opinions as opinions, and facts as facts. Not taking your and other’s limiting opinions so seriously can have a colossal effect on how you think about yourself, your development and your abilities. Questions the limiting beliefs you have right now and increase you potential today!
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About the authorGabor Hosszu is the founder and head article writer of Goals Infinite. Being passionate about personal development and helping others were the main reasons he launched this site. By trade Gabor is a mechanical engineer. His hobbies include being a chilli farmer, a video game nerd and a wannabe beer expert.