With a Blink of an Eye

February 16, 2010
First impressions; a sense of who a person is the initial interaction you have with them. To ‘judge a book by its cover’ is known to be a bad thing, and we should try not to do it. However, the truth is that it is close to impossible. In the book Blink, which I have read numerous times, the unconscious mind is explained and concerns on judgment are forgotten. Judgment in any case is a good thing because we are analyzing our minds first thoughts that something portrays. While most people believe that first impressions are judgmental and that you cannot get to know someone in one meeting. Without knowing someone for a long period of time, you can know what type of a person is in one look or first acquaintance. It is important to know that judging someone is not a bad thing at all. In order to interpret our unique behaviors and personalities, we must recognize the information acquired in the blink of an eye can be as valuable as information acquired over months of friendship and observation.
We use our judgment every second everyday of our lives. Judging a person before you know them in our society is seen as a bad thing, but how can it be a bad thing when we all do it and in the end it turns out to help us? Judgment can be as simple as choosing not to eat something because of how it looks or deciding to not be someone’s friend because of a vibe they give off. Decisions made very quickly can be just as good as decisions made cautiously and calculated. Even a simple decision on what type of person might be. Our experiences and our environment generate our first impressions; which means that we can change our first impressions by changing the way we comprise those thoughts. For example, if you associate orange with sadness then everything orange with have a sense of melancholy to you. Even though your thoughts may be compromised, for that first impression, you see the person for you they truly are. A person will give off the vibe they want to, they will express themselves in the clothes they wear and say the things they want to say. Of course there may be different circumstances, but our mind will automatically judge someone without us even knowing it. Our unconscious mind is a powerful force, but it’s fallible. It’s not the case that a gut feeling always pulls through, instantly decoding the ‘truth’ of a situation; it can be thrown off, distracted and disabled. But most of the time our mind does not fail us. Therefore, I believe in judgment because it is apart of each of us every second and it would be wrong to have everyone think they are bad people for doing something they cannot help.
After reading the novel Blink several times I have become extremely passionate about this subject. I often find myself bringing up studies shown in the book in my everyday life because I want to share this newfound knowledge with everyone I can. I have been told my whole life to stop judging and caring so much about everything but maybe I’m not the only one. I could not stop reading this book the first time I read it and never has a book interested me so much. Even though this topic is not in the news currently, or never really, it is a part of what parents have been telling their children for decades; ‘don’t judge a book by it’s cover.’ If others see how this is near to impossible, then hopefully, others will also be relieved that judging is not such a bad thing after all.
Look before you leap. Stop and think. Don’t judge a book by its cover. These things we have been told it is right to live by and to always use reason before we do anything. Even though our world requires much reasoning for you to be able to even have an opinion on something or someone, we do not really need all that data. With our minds working with out even knowing it and making split decisions for us, making these quick leaps to conclusion, aren’t such leaps at all.





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