Yesterday I found myself scaling down on the “intake” of the new environment because I found myself trying to force data collection rater than simply “sit and observe.”
We do not live in an individualized/compartmentalized world but one that is a blend and dance of people interacting with each other. Rather than observing the whole image (I know very Gestalt and stuff) I was trying to analyze every part which is not only unnecessary but dumb as a falling rock.
I just started to focus on the difference I could see comparing to past experiences. While back in Miami, a loud group at the Cracker Barrel would be something normal giving the Latino’s propension to simply be loud and expansive, here in Tennessee is not as common with most people being rather concentrated on communicating just loud enough for the person across the table. So when I saw table with about 8 people being loud, I watched to see their attitude: It was celebratory and jovial which rendered low in the threat scale according to experience and gut. And that was it! No need for a person to person analysis and assessment because truly it is not necessary, it only wastes time and mental stamina and does nothing to promote your safety.
Although certainly there are different behaviors between where I was and where I am, people will have a lot of commonalities everywhere you go. If you know those already, you do not need to “relearn” them. You just concentrate in the differences, analyze what could be consider a danger indicator and archive it for future reference. The rest is just ornamental stuff.
Work smart, not hard.