Here is an assumption that some frustrated British citizens made on June 23rd of this year, 2016: that a vote for Brexit would register as a protest.

And many students and young adults, discovering on Referendum Day that they had to get up and go somewhere rather than being able to vote online, assumed that someone(s) other than themselves would make the obvious choice for them. After all, they hardly knew anyone who would vote for Leave, besides their old Uncle Harold.

You might wonder why an American is lecturing the British public on this matter. I am not. I am worried about our own assumptions at the moment.

Scientists make assumptions when designing an experiment, and sometimes this works out.

Assumptions work well in a relationship, except when they don't.

Serial assumptions produce friction. Tacit assumptions create distance. The operative word here is 'tacit'. Is it so hard to speak up? You could even lead with the words 'I assume'. The key is that you are communicating. If your heart, or your ego, is in the right place, you might even welcome dissent.

Read more about assumptions here.

Photo: Will Stewart @ Unsplash