Evolution Shift
A Future Look at Today
July 13th, 2020

The Collapse of Legacy Thinking

A clear way to look at all the disruption of the 2020s is that legacy thinking and the reality it has created, is collapsing. Legacy thinking is thought from the past. That thought created the realities of the past and present that are now collapsing in an accelerated fashion.

What was, what reality was, what structures were and all the thinking that brought them into being is giving way in the present as we move to what will be. The difficult thing for us all is understanding that past moorings to reality still exist, but they are giving way to entirely new forms of thinking, reality and relationships. Fixed is becoming mutable. Change is constant and on-going. Attachment to old views will create gaps into seeing what is actually going on.

This collapse of legacy thinking is something I first explored in my 2013 book “Entering the Shift Age.” The concept became one of the most referenced topics of the book. I hadn’t expected that, but sometimes what resonates with readers is not fully anticipated by the writer

To quote from the book:

“Legacy thinking is often why it is so hard to see change, especially now because we are living in the present through the filters of the past. Only when the change becomes personal do we understand the change. And then there is the conflict: either you have to accept that your legacy thinking is no longer valid, or you hold on for a more secure and comfortable view of the world. That is why people get so upset by change – it threatens their point of view or worldview

Take a moment to think about your own thoughts and how you use them to evaluate and see the world around you. Are you looking at what is going on in 2012 through the filter of concepts or thoughts that you accepted as valid for the first time years or even decades ago?”

Drop in 2020 for 2012 and this is even more true. Think of all the things going on that force you to struggle with your view of the world. The upset you feel due to the virus, the depression, the demonstrations, the politics and the tribal realities of wearing masks has, at it’s foundation, the sense that things are “out of control” simply because they don’t fit what you think reality is. What reality was.

A simple metaphor for this would be the act of rowing a boat. You are looking back to where you have been with your back facing where you are going. You are backing into the future, looking at the past.

We all do this. We all have core ideas and beliefs that we hold because we were taught them, were told to believe them, or discovered them on our own. We carry them with us and use them as filters to view the world, to solve problems, and to consider the future.

Become aware of all your legacy thoughts that feel threatened. Do they match your reality today in 2020? Do they prevent you from seeing the present clearly? See how they affect your view of the future. If you feel any disconnect with what is going on, then you are seeing things through legacy thinking. Think about how you frame questions.

For example, a wrong question in America in 2020 might be: “When will the economy bounce back?” The more present and aware question would be: “How will the economy bounce forward.” Remember that in this decade of the 2020s, there is no “going back”, only going forward, differently.

In 2012, and even more so now, in 2020, the big areas of legacy thinking collapse are:

‒ the nation state

‒ governmental structures and political parties

‒ healthcare and medicine

‒ education at all levels

‒ energy and energy use

‒ consumption – necessary and unnecessary

‒ conceptual structures put in place by the silent generation and the baby boom generation.

So, as you look at this list, you can see that you can’t hide from big, fundamental change. The legacy thinking of our past will no longer have a present reality as we must move to future thinking. Vision thinking. Creative thinking. Design thinking.

The Future is Here

As a futurist it has been clear to me for some 6 years that the 2020s would be the most disruptive decade in history. A decade that will shape humanity’s trajectory at least through 2050. That is why I committed to writing a series of high-level, short books about this decade. I think a number of you have already purchased my newly published book, the first in this series, “The 2020s: The Most Disruptive Decade in History.” I wrote this book to be an easy read yet one that will truly prepare you for the macro dynamics that are and will shape the decade. The book will help you let go of your legacy thinking. You can go straight to Amazon and type in the title or go here to both read the reviews and click through to Amazon: https://the2020sdecade.com/. Thank you!


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In times of global uncertainty and disruption it takes a futurist to provide context and understanding.

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