How to handle different opinions than yours

How do you love people that have different opinions than you do?

This last 12 months has really been a time of divisive opinions, and it’s not new but I believe it’s been more in the forefront, where we have people that believe one thing, when maybe we believe the complete opposite. I don’t know if you’ve had the experience of seeing a friend’s post on social media or a colleague’s post, and you’re kind of shocked by their opinion. If we’re not careful, it can start to impact our opinion of them and we go into a place of judgment and criticism which can lead to a whole bunch of different results.

I know I’ve had that experience where I’ve been surprised, “Oh! I didn’t think that person would believe that!” And I find myself going into judgment.

I believe so strongly that it’s important for us not to stand AGAINST something or someone, but instead stand FOR something or for someone.

Think about when we have a war on terrorism, we have a war on drugs, we have a war against something, we are pushing against it. We know that wherever we’re placing our energy, that continues to persist. I have lots of videos that explain the law of attraction and how that works.

As long as we’re pushing against something or someone, we give it more energy, we give it more life, and it gets bigger and bigger and bigger.

It’s really important to notice what’s triggering the things that you don’t agree with, that you don’t believe in, and look at that and shift your perspective to, “What DO I believe in?” What do I believe in, what am I standing for, and how can I be an advocate FOR something instead of against something?

What that does, is it puts your energy and it puts your attention on what you do want to create, and starts to build momentum towards that.

If you have friends, if you have family, if you have colleagues right now who believe something you don’t believe, look at this as a powerfully rich experience to learn something, to challenge your own judgments, to challenge the way you’re thinking about things.

And to ask yourself, are you able to love somebody and be in relationship with somebody even if you don’t share the same opinion? This takes great courage, great vulnerability, and it’s a great opportunity for growth.

I’ve had this experience this year with a friend who has opposing beliefs from me on a particular subject, and it has been such a deeply rich experience for me to notice my judgments, to be open to hear a different perspective, and I have grown so much in that process. My opinion hasn’t changed, and hers probably hasn’t either, but we’re able to connect at a deeper level.

We live in a world where we need people to have different opinions and different perspectives to challenge the status quo. We all need to bring our own unique gifts and ideas to the table. We live in a collaborative world where we need each other and we need that diversity, and so it’s really up to each and every one of us to ask, “How am I going to live in that diversity? Where am I going to challenge my own biases, my own beliefs? How am I being open to hear different perspectives and to be open to receive those? And what maybe is there for me to know here?”

We can’t control other people’s opinions or beliefs or ideas, what we have control over is how you are going to show up in that relationship. Are you going to grow from it or are you going to resist it?

My invitation to you is to notice the next time you’re in conversation with somebody who has a different opinion than you do, to take a breath, open up your mind, open up your heart, and know that first of all, this is another human being. That they have their own experiences, they have their own opinions. And ask where can you open yourself up to be more compassionate and understanding? Where can you grow from this experience?

As we all open our hearts to each other, and we’re willing to be in those conversations where we don’t always agree, that’s where the growth comes from. That’s where we’re going to expand not only as individuals, but really on how we’re showing up for each other, and with each other in those conversations.

Remember what you’re standing FOR, not to push against somebody else’s idea but really stand in your believing of what is important to you, and to connect with people from that place, so we’re not pushing against each other, we’re not fighting against each other, but we’re standing for something.

And as we’re in that energy and we rise to that place, that’s where the rich dialogue can happen.

So what are you standing for? What do you believe in? What’s important to you? And enter into those dialogues from that place with an open heart, with an open mind, with curiosity, and with your energy on what’s important to you.

To you living a life that you love,

Stacey

Stacey Berger Business Coach
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About Stacey

Stacey Berger

Stacey Berger

After 16 years of climbing the corporate ladder, mentoring entrepreneurs in marking, operations and finance, I made the decision in 2014 to teach success principles full time, combining my love of business and personal development.

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