Why People Aren't Good At Seeing The Future

Jan 07, 2021 3:02 pm

I was having a beer or two with a Family Attorney way back in 2003 in St. Paul, Minnesota.

He was talking about how people are blind to their significant other leaving them.

"When someone comes into my office and says they are planning to divorce their spouse, they generally think the other person has at least some idea it isn't going well. But then the spouse gets served their papers and they are shocked," he said.

"Unless there was some obvious event that instigated the divorce, they almost never see it coming."

We discussed it at length and the symptoms generally are:

  1. The future-divorcer suddenly drops all criticism of their spouse, almost as if they have forgotten all about their complaints.
  2. They are working out or somehow on a health or wellness kick without including their partner.
  3. They are making excuses to be out of the house for long periods of time, generally longer work hours, volunteering, helping family, whatever the reason they give, it increases to an abnormal amount of time away.
  4. Conversations get limited to the least amount of words possible.

Now if you have a spouse with these symptoms it does not mean they are going to divorce you, I'm just saying these were the symptoms that we discussed way back in 2003. But also, it probably wouldn't hurt to get some legal advice, if you know what I'm saying. :)

Turns out what the spouse who is about to get served is thinking something along the lines of the following:

  1. My spouse is sure being a lot nicer to me lately, they must have gotten over whatever problem they were having that made them criticize me.
  2. My spouse is getting back into shape and not bugging me about it. Maybe I should think about getting into shape.
  3. They sure are working a lot. But now I have time to do _____ that they don't like to do anyway.
  4. They sure have been quiet lately.

The symptoms are often misunderstood.

The same thing can happen with your customers. If you are seeing a change in your customer's behavior, you should really start to dig into the numbers.

Are they purchasing or visiting less often?

Has communication stopped or become short?

Are they having some kind of issue you may be able to help with?

The best way to solve the problem (in both cases) is usually better communication.

See if you can find out what's up with your customer's behavior and if you can help. It may just save you from a divorce.

Now go out there and be profitable!