You’ve undoubtedly heard the phrase “Think Outside the Box.” But why is the box even there in the first place?
We think in the box because it is the only box given us. That is, our thoughts almost automatically become restricted to that which is presented to us. For example, the mother asks the youngster whether he would prefer fish or liver for dinner. Sometimes neither of the options is preferable, but we have a tendency to choose from these restricted options presented to us.
The more your self-talk begins with, “Are these my only choices?” the more options you’ll discover. A typical example is the oft-quoted question, “Is the glass half empty or half full?” The optimist responds that the glass is half full. The pessimist responds that the glass is half empty.
But the pragmatist responds, “You have twice as much glass as you need.”
Invariably, humor aside, other options exist, and you will discover them if you ask the simple question: “Are these my only choices?”