Dirty Dozen #7 – Common Sense

by Rajesh Setty on October 19, 2009

dirty-dozen-common-senseThe last word we covered was Impatience and today we will look at word #7 – Common Sense

Dictionary definition:
Good sense and sound judgment in practical matters.

No, I don’t have a problem with the dictionary definition of common sense. However, I cringe every time someone talks about something “uncommon” and says that it is “common sense.” The real “common sense” is table stakes and everybody is ought to have it. Nobody gets brownie points for that. What we need to aim for is “uncommon sense” that will set us apart in the marketplace.

Remember that common sense is relative. What is common sense for you may be rocket science for someone else.

Think about it.

Do you put your hand on fire? No, it’s common sense. When you were a baby it was not common sense.

Do you try to walk out the window in the balcony? No, it’s common sense. When you were a baby it was not common sense.

Do you wash your hands before eating food? Yes, because it’s common sense. When you were a kid you would wonder why we need all these restrictions.

You learn a lot of things as you grow based on who you are interacting with and what you are reading and learning.  When things become obvious and go into your background memory, it becomes common sense.

The point is that common sense is an entry ticket. You don’t want to aim to have common sense. It should be a given.

Then, what should you focus on getting?

Uncommon sense.

Uncommon sense is what will make you see the same things that others are seeing but have better and more powerful interpretations. You can see the same situation, read the same things, listen to the same ideas but make more out of them than others.

“Uncommon sense” is scarce and if it was not, it would not be uncommon.

Go for the Uncommon Sense and Thrive!

You can listen to the audio here:


Illustration by Ming. Ming is the creator of the Fantasy Story webcomic. He is also a freelance illustrator, designer, painting instructor and occasional luxury car salesman. Ming is based in Penang, Malaysia. You can find him on twitter @Artmaker

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