conflict, prediction

Prediction is the name of the game we are all involved in. We play it without realising we are, and we also fail to notice how bad we are at it.

Have you noticed how much we, people, like to predict things? We spend our lives doing it, and even when we think we are not doing it, we are at it, nevertheless.

Prediction is a handy habit, no doubt about it. The problem is that we do it without realising it, and this unconscious compulsion gets us into trouble. When it lets us down the knock-on effect is that we blame others, instead of considering where the fault really lies, with our habit of prediction.

Take for example how we rely on others to do what they have always done. We assume they’ll behave the way we expect them to, even though we know how unreliable people can be, and how quixotic and variable human nature is.

The blame game

So we have a situation where we are all buzzing around each day, doing what we do and expecting others to do what they’ll do. As we go about it, we (unconsciously) anticipate our own actions and theirs, with the result that we often get it wrong. How do we respond? We blame!

Blaming is a routine way of covering our failed predictions. When we consider that someone else has not done as expected, typically, we blame them.

And here’s another interesting little quirk. When another person makes a mistake or fails to act as predicted, we attribute the cause to something they did wrong, or a flaw in their character. We personalise it by blaming them.

Conversely, when we perceive that WE have failed we usually blame circumstance, or someone else. We de-personalise it by attributing the cause to something outside ourselves. This is something you CAN predict with some certainty.

Through all this, we fail to notice that the lost time and heartache is due to our own reliance on something that is inherently unreliable, prediction.


I’m a psychologist, coach, and therapist. All my work is aimed at enabling people to improve personal aspects of their lives and work.


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