Life is beautiful in all the ways one can live or perceive it. Grasp each opportunity for understanding from the viewpoint of others. Open yourself to learning new ideas and living a more creative life. Enrich yourself with friends from diverse backgrounds. Choose to interact with them closely, reveling in the ways they challenge your traditional thought processes. Focus on listening to their views, rather than merely waiting to express your own. Find motivation in reaching new conclusions by giving their perceptions some thought.
“When you judge others, you do not define them; you define yourself.”
– Earl Nightingale
What type of person do you want to be – the one alone, gossiping in the corner… or the one who builds bridges between people, embodying kindness, fairness, and inclusiveness? Before you speak out against another, put yourself in that person’s shoes to imagine how you would react if someone said that same comment about you. How would you feel to know your words have made another person sob, flush with embarrassment, or feel less of him or herself? Ask God to help in giving you pause before you speak, and compassion rather than criticism.
“Judge tenderly, if you must. There is usually a side you have not heard, a story you know nothing about, and a battle waged that you are not having to fight.”
– Traci Lea LaRussa
Strive to become less judgmental. There are hidden stories behind everyone’s words and actions. You are unqualified in drawing conclusions about the choices another person makes. Exposing yourself to diverse cultural backgrounds will help you appreciate diversity, as well as remain sensitive to others.
Enjoy the winding path of learning more than the short-term gratification of being right.
It may come natural for you to interrupt and argue, especially if you are focused on gamesmanship and instant gratification. Yet, you are only artificially inflating yourself with stolen energy from those who are humbled into silence by your aggression. Instead, quietly consider the viewpoints of others. Ask questions to learn more as this help you identify with others. Seek out new experiences and alternate views to focus on the process of learning, which will bring you greater rewards in the long run.
- How can I motivate my peers to feel at ease while relating to me?
- How can I show people that I am open to their viewpoints?
- What behavior of mine turns others away?