My last post on the Gillette commercial and toxic masculinity prompted some strong responses – which I expected. These are good conversations to have, opportunities to spend some time trying to understand one another. Opportunities to remove emotion and recognize that the conflicting opinions of others are nothing to get worked up about.
Our differences are something to celebrate, not fear. What a boring place this would be if we all thought the same.
We’re living in an interesting time, rife with polarized opinions and heated commentaries on everything from gun control to the best way to cook squash. Many people are walking around every day on the verge of a total meltdown because the opinions of others are not in accordance with their own. But rest assured that getting amped up and emotional because someone else has a different opinion from your own is a surefire path to a restless and frustrating life. Look for reasons to get offended and we’ll find countless opportunities, each day.
Years ago, I was listening to a talk by Wayne Dyer when he shared this little nugget of wisdom:
Take no offense.
That which offends you only weakens you. Being offended creates the same destructive energy that offended you in the first place – so transcend your ego and stay in peace.
Wisdom is the ability to listen to others’ opinions and endeavor to understand them – even when their ideas are wildly different from our own. We can have conversations without getting heated. And usually, we can learn a thing or two in the process.
We get mad when we’re living from a place of fear – when we somehow perceive the ideas of others as threats to ourselves. Take some time to ponder that notion and its easy to see how ridiculous it truly is.
I would love for this blog to become a place where we could start conversations and genuinely try to understand one another. We must stop living from a place of fear, stop feeling threatened, and stop looking for reasons to get offended.
The only person who suffers when I get offended… is me. It is far more interesting to try to understand a different perspective than it is to remain firmly rooted in our own little plastic bubbles of ideology.
Let’s aim higher.