Overcome your Blind Spots

In medical literature, a blind spot may briefly as be defined as the in space in the visual field that corresponds to the lack of light detecting photoreceptor cells on the optic disc of the retina where the optic nerve passes through the optic disc. Simply put, it is a small area, insensitive to light, in the retina of the eye where the optic nerve enters, it is the area where vision is hindered or obscured. Socially, a blind spot may be described as a prejudice, or area of ignorance, that one has but is often unaware of. The Collins English Dictionary further defines it as an area where radio reception is poor.
So, why do I want to talk of the Blind Spot in this month?!
Through many casual conversations on different important and not so important topics, I have come to realize that it is not always that I or the other party may have the same point of view about the subject matter, and this sometimes seems to cause tension, especially if it is a “sensitive” topic (e.g. religion, politics, gender, entertainment, technology, poverty, hygiene, sexual orientation, etc). I have been searching myself and questioning, this pattern that seems to be so repeated at different times, different topics being discussed and different people, even when I am not part of the conversation, as long as it’s a sensitive topic and differing views, people tend to end up tense. Why?! Is it because we don’t know how to have a civil conversation? Maybe!! Or it is the blind spot in us that makes us think and feel that “our” truth/philosophy is the only truth above all other truths/philosophies?!
The late Dr. Okadigbo Chuba assumed that, “If you are emotionally attached to your tribe, religion or political leaning to the point that truth and justice become secondary considerations, your education is useless. Your exposure is useless. If you cannot reason beyond petty sentiments, you are a liability to mankind.” Wow!! What a revelation! Should this make us all rethink our own philosophies and how we engage in more civil conversations, knowing that our truths may not be the only truths or that they are not above all other.
As leaders, we have a duty to challenge our mindset, to embrace diversity, to be open to change to listen to other truths that we work so hard to debate down, because of our own philosophical inclinations. As leaders we have a duty to overcome our blind spots. Let’s do this!

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