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Don't take my word !

Anita Evans
Vilcabamba Ecuador September 09

One of the lessons I remember from school, I’m talking specifically about the year that used to be known as the 5th form in New Zealand. And let’s be honest here, there really isn’t a hell of a lot any of us remember of what we were taught from when we were at school at the age of 15. So this gives you the level of impact that this one lesson, one statement from my history teacher had on me. He said “don’t believe what you read in books and what you are told by people. Research it for yourself and make up your own mind on everything.”

His point was twofold (he was a bit of a liberal, I guess looking back on it now) don’t take what the teachers, adults, people and text books tell you at face value and learn to do your own research, develop your research skills and make up your own mind and beliefs and point of view ON EVERYTHING.

Nearly 30 years later (30 years of practicing what I learnt that day) of analyzing the people and events around me, it’s time to put what I’ve discovered over this time into words. And pass his lesson onto others.

To best explain what I’ve discovered I’ll have to tell a story first.

I was having a conversation with an acquaintance of mine; let’s call him “John Doe”. He said “Jane Doe is setting up a real estate web site. She’s going to be the first local to do this. To set up a real estate web site and sell real estate here”.

I said “what? No, that’s not correct. Paul Henry of Nelson Reality is a local, he has a website, is legally registered here in Nelson and has been selling real estate for a long time.”

John; “No, Nelson Reality is run by Carl Brown, he’s not a local, Nelson Reality is his business.”

I replied: “No, Nelson Reality is Paul Henry’s busniness and Carl works for Paul under Paul’s license.”

John; “I don’t know about this Paul Henry. I was told it was Carl’s business.”

The optimum words here are “I was told.” Told by whom I wondered? He certainly wasn’t told by Paul Henry. He was obviously told by someone who had a hidden agenda and that agenda made it necessary for this person to pass on false, misleading information. He was obviously told this information from someone whom he believes to be a creditable source for receiving this information as he has taken it onboard on face value and repeated it. Therefore, given that the subject was real estate the source of the information must have something to do with real estate and probably in opposition to Nelson Reality.

My point here is that my friend Joe had received a ‘story’ from a person about Nelson Reality and had never bothered to clarify what he had been told from other sources for himself. He has then gone on to repeat this story with his own ‘slant’ to other people.

It’s not Joe’s fault. I guess he’s been bought up in the school system and takes what he is told on face value especially if the subject being discussed comes from someone with some supposed ‘creditability’ in the subject field being discussed.

A very common example of this is ‘specialist doctors’. You will hear people say “the specialist said I have …..” for example. They will take this on board to the full extent!

But let's examine the word ‘specialist’ the word’s definition is · an expert who is devoted to one occupation or branch of learning, · practices one branch of medicine. So this person has a narrow view by the fact that they are a specialist. They DO NOT have the ability to take in the big picture. So they make their diagnosis on this very limited view of the condition, world, human being, very limited view of everything. Therefore it goes to be said that their treatment will be also based on this very narrow view of the world.

My point is: when someone, anyone, mother, friend, expert, specialist, ANYONE tells you something, anything, for GOD’S sake do not take it on face value, ESPECIALLY if it is about someone else (otherwise known as gossip) or some nasty health news. And I don’t care what their credentials are and if anything their credentials limit their mind and make their opinion even more subject to bias.

Take it with a BIG GRAIN OF SALT. Go and see for yourself. If it is gossip about a person or business go talk to the person/business direct. The person you received the information from may have had a bad experience but you may have a fantastic experience. The other person’s experience is based on their reality of the world, their beliefs. So what they find bad you may find good. As your reality of the world and beliefs are solely yours and theirs are solely theirs! You are unique so cannot base your experiences on someone else’s.

You can listen to what they say but don’t take it on board or repeat it until you have done your own research. Preferably, base your research on as they say ‘talking to the horse’s mouth’.

If it is medical for heaven’s sake get a second opinion. Have the tests run again independently. There a many, numerous false positives and false negatives in lab test results. Lab tests are done and analyzed by a human being, which makes them subject to human error.

An example of this is occurred in England just recently.

Fri, 18 Sep 2009 1:50p.m.

A catastrophic blunder at a hospital in Lancashire has led to 18 women being told they have breast cancer despite previously being given the all clear.

The alarm was raised when colleagues of a consultant voiced concerns about his work. Hundreds of tests dating back three years were re-examined and some patients were then given the devastating news they had the disease.

Every year thousands of women begin early treatment for breast cancer when their condition is flagged up by routine screening. Many lives are saved by such early intervention.

However at the Victoria Hospital in Accrington, the actions of a single consultant radiologist have led to cancer being missed in 18 women.

Initial tests had shown all 18 needed further investigation but an experienced radiologist failed to carry out the appropriate follow ups. It was only when other members of staff became concerned about their colleague’s work that the problems came to light.

The problems were first discovered in December and by the end of March a full independent review had been launched. In total 355 breast assessments were reviewed. 85 women needed another examination, 14 were told they had invasive cancer, four had a less serious form of the disease.

The hospital trust say that despite the delay the cancer was still in it’s early stages and the radiologist is now no longer working.

Source: www.3news.co.nz/18-women-misdiagnosed-in-breast-cancer-blunder/tabid/420/articleID/121694/cat/59/Default.aspx

Start looking at the events and people around and make up your own mind. Next time you find yourself sitting at a café and someone starts talking about someone else or another business ESPECIALLY IF WHAT THEY ARE SAYING IS NEGATIVE listen and if it is going to impact a decision that you make or your are going to repeat it go and do your research first.

Give yourself time, lots of time, as you have to develop your research and analytical skills and this takes time, like 30 years :-)

But don’t take my word on it !