Thursday, June 16, 2011


An assumption is a belief or idea that we hold to be true, often with little or no evidence to support it.

This sounds a little dangerous, doesn't it? 

And yet, we make assumptions every day in all kinds of circumstances.  In fact, we make hundreds---if not thousands--- of assumptions every day.  Why do we do it?

Well, when I think about it, it would be completely impractical to live our lives with any continuity or flow without making many assumptions.  I mean, if we did not assume that other drivers would usually obey traffic laws, we would be too cautious and slow to ever drive anywhere---it would take hours to get to our destinations.

Where we get into trouble is when we make assumptions that do not pan out.  The light turns green and we proceed into the intersection and get T-Boned by a drunk driver who is unable to function........My wife says she will meet me at the restaurant at 7:00, but she doesn't show up because she assumed it was another restaurant (yes...this has happened).......My boss asks me to do something, but I assume it is a low priority.  It isn't.  You get the picture.  We've all been there.

I've been thinking about assumptions lately because it has occurred  to me just how really important it is to make intelligent ones.  Does government make intelligent assumptions?  No.  Look at the mess that causes.  Sometimes our doctor makes an assumption that is wrong---that can lead to really bad things.

Then, there are the assumptions we make on an interpersonal level.  Poor assumptions in this area can ruin relationships.  Not long ago we had friends over for dinner.  This was a couple we knew (we thought very well) from church.  Following dinner, we went to the living room.  I had the idea that it might be fun to play a simple little word game for fun. 

WRONG.  About two minutes after play commenced, the man and woman guests began arguing about which of them had the right answer to the last question.  This arguement continued to build for the next 10 minutes until there was an atmosphere of contention and animosity.  It got ugly.  I stopped the "game" and we never looked at them the same way again.  All because I assumed the game would be "fun".

Of course, I guess the absolute worst assumptions are those made between man and woman---especially early in relationships.  Sometimes our assumptions occur because we WANT them to be true.  This can be deadly.

What are your thoughts about assumptions?


  1. I have learned through lessons in life never take life or people for granted. I assumed my stray away son would have gotten in touch with me by now but 10weeks down the line not a word written or phone.So now I assume I'm not the mother I thought I was.

    Thanks for the visit and comment, had great fun.

  2. sad about the surprise row between your friends. unfortunately, that will be how you remember them most - at their worst... we're all human beings and are capable of so many lapses in behavior, judgement, "open mouth-insert foot" moments and even dangerous tendencies. it's a wonder we get along at all...

  3. Sometimes you almost have to come out and assume things. People just dont seem to speak their mind anymore, nor do they tell you the whole truth. Sometimes you must fill in the blanks.

  4. A good blog idea. You know one of my recent assumptions about the little "country" church I visited, you know the one, the "little brown church in the vale". NOT!

  5. Hi Clint, I think "expectations" are the cousins of assumptions. One of the sayings I try to live by to protect myself is "it hurts less to expect nothing, than to hope in vain." This has served me well after having learned it when I was married to my ex-husband for 23 yrs. and was constantly disappointed with even the smallest of things that should have been, how shall I say, obvious. Oh, I slip and fall on this one sometimes and find myself expecting how someone will act or respond to a situation and want to slap myself and say "wake up woman." All is well though, these days. I don't stress over my assumptions though.
    Anonymous aka Carol B.

  6. It's always best to talk instead of assume. But you just never know how things will go!

  7. This is really funny. Love that you are saying what the rest of us are thinking.

    Assumptions are the bane of any relationship. We learn behaviors and responses and never shake them.

  8. Kinda funny, my husband and I were talking about assuming Monday or Tuesday night. Thanks for your post.

  9. The most pains I have felt in my life came either from wrong assumptions or from stubborness. I am still a work in progress at 71.
    Arkansas Patti

  10. It's normal to have assumptions, but when they are a big misunderstanding it's not so good.

    Have a beautiful day and greetings to you

  11. We assume but we do not realise we are making assumptions until we feel disappointed and don't really understand why.

  12. Never assume it will get you in trouble every time. B

  13. It has been said, get everything in writting and don't assume anything. Probably not a good thing to do in a personal friendship or a marriage but a must in the buisness world. Sealing a deal on a man's word and a hand shake are long gone :-(

  14. My thoughts on assumptions: never make them.
    Now that's just my thought...I now need to actually commence to turning that into action!!!

  15. Very good Clint, very good.

  16. Still trying to unlearn the bad habit of making assumptions! :)