Verify the Facts
Assumptions are the death of progress. When we make assumptions based on incomplete information we set ourselves up for failure. Verify the facts you are given. Often times we hear something from someone else or assume something about someone without actually asking the person if it’s true.
Operating off of those assumptions sets us up to crash and burn because we are going off of assumed information instead of verified information. There were many times during my military career when someone would give me guidance based on what they said was in the regulation. I would go look it up to verify that what they said was actually in the regulation. More times than not I found that they misquoted the regulations. Had I not verified the facts and checked it out for myself, I would have done things the wrong way.
Someone may tell you that someone else said something about them. If you believe that person without verifying it with the person directly you may be going on false information. Often times I have heard people talk about what they heard other’s have been saying. If it’s not verified with the person who is supposedly saying it, you can’t be sure it’s true.
A friend of mine knew a guy who had been told his wife was having an affair with another man. He found out who the man was but instead of verifying the facts, he assumed it was true and beat the other man up. Then he found out it wasn’t true! An assumption not verified turned into an assault charge. How many times have you acted on something that someone else told you without verifying it to be true?
Sometimes we get a gut feeling or instinct about something but our minds can blow it out of proportion. It’s important to verify the facts before taking action. We make assumptions based on our own perceptions and values in life. Sometimes no matter what, we can’t be convinced it’s not what we think it is and have to hit a wall before we realize it’s not the way we thought.
A friend of mine had a business deal go wrong. One of the people in the deal got a group of people to go after her with half-truths and false information. This person was resentful about the outcome of the business and wanted to destroy my friend at all cost. They got someone to write an article about her that caused her significant problems. The article was skewed with half-truths and the facts weren’t accurate the way they were presented. There was a lot of editorializing in the article. People took it as truth and turned against her instead of verifying the facts. People contacted me because we are friends and attempted to get me to hate her too. I chose to stay out of the situation because you can’t negotiate or compel someone to see your point of view that is so bent on this kind of action. I wanted to keep my serenity. I knew this friend for many years before this happened and I knew the truth because we had shared our stories with each other long before the article was written. That experience alone showed me how damaging it can be to believe what someone else has put out there and take it as the entire truth.
Bottom line: Verify the Facts. Your peace of mind will be much greater if you do.
See you next week!
Eldonna Lewis Fernandez, MSgt USAF Retired