Early 2013, and an item in the news had me thinking about a self improvement topic, and there is a decidedly Scottish twang to the words…
Here’s some background – the Scottish National Party (SNP) has long campaigned for Scotland to be an independent country from the rest of the United Kingdom. They always said that if they formed a government in Scotland they would hold a referendum on the issue.
So, when they did indeed win a majority in the devolved Scottish government, they set about pressing ahead with that referendum.
British Prime Minister David Cameron agreed that a referendum should go ahead in line with the wishes of the SNP that had been democratically elected. So, in 2014 the Scottish people will decide if 400 years of union should be turned over, seeing Scotland as independent.
I say ‘the Scottish people’ advisedly, because only people resident in Scotland will be able to vote. I happen to play a lot of curling, and see a lot of Scots playing with me
at the rink in the South East of England. They won’t be able to vote though, whereas if I lived in Scotland, as an Englishman I would be allowed to vote.
That’s a different issue though – in this article I wanted to focus not on *who* will be asked, but *what* they will be asked.
Here’s what the SNP originally wanted the question to be –
“Do you agree that Scotland should be an independent country?”
Well, the electoral commission, who will be in charge of running the referendum, acted on complaints that it was a leading question. After testing, they agreed that it was, the psychology being that people were less likely to disagree with a ‘do you agree’ statement.
They suggested the question should be –
“Should Scotland be an independent country? Yes/No,”
The commission said that this second question was far more neutral, far less leading. The SNP have agreed (I suspect they had little choice), and I would tend to agree also.
So, how does all this talk of question wording affect your self improvement..?
Well, I’ve written about self improvement for years, along with goal achievement and personal development. Some people ask me how I can keep coming up with content on the same subjects, and I do it by making the same points over and over, but using different words to do it.
I make no apology for it, because I believe passionately in what we can achieve in our lives by making what can sometimes be the smallest of changes.
Yes, I use different current or historical events to hang the points on, but the points are the same – it’s the words that I change.
One word might do nothing for you, but a different word making the same point might hit home. Can you see what I’m saying? Can you hear what I’m saying? There, I just did it, and if you perceive things more visually or aurally, you might absorb one version of the question more readily than the other.
I do enjoy throwing words around, and I particularly enjoy the prospect of something I write having an impact on someone who might have been left cold by my previous content.
It’s a long held belief of mine that our surroundings are consequences of our actions.
Changing the actions can change those consequences for the better, and to help change the actions we need to change our attitude. Our attitude is changed by our thoughts, and are thoughts are made up of…words.
I can’t comment on your personal circumstances or goals as you read this, because I don’t know them. You can though.
Think to your desires and ambitions. Think of the words you use when you talk to yourself – think to the Scottish referendum, and ask yourself if you are constantly leading yourself to negative conclusions, when a change in the words could lead to a totally different perception?
Ok, let me know what you think – leave a comment below, and feel free to share, like etc.
‘Til Next Time,
Health & Happiness,
P.S. Don’t forget you can grab my motivational book ‘Transform Your Life in 21 Days!’ at rock bottom kindle pricing!