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As the media and politicians continue to polarize people, I think it’s important to remember that you don’t have to agree with anyone’s particular point of view or share their politics to get along.
People sometimes forget that some of the best relationships are those in which each person helps the other to broaden their perspective and grow as an individual.
To only interact with and surround yourself with people who agree with you and share your points of view tends to create a very narrow and distorted view of the world.
It has been said you become the average of the five people you interact with most. What kind of picture does that paint if you share exactly the same likes, dislikes, and view of the world?
To simply take offense at something without giving it any thought is to deny yourself an opportunity for growth. Even if that growth simply means reaffirming what you already believe.
To think you have to agree with everything about a person is to deny yourself of some of the best friendships the world has to offer.
To automatically dismiss someone because they are different than you does the same.
I think one of the best gifts anyone can give another person is something that results in the recipient saying, “I’d never thought about it like that before.”
An expanded point of view is a key to many locks you didn’t even know existed.
I certainly don’t expect everyone to always agree with me or see things from my point of view, but that doesn’t mean we can’t be friends.
And if we can’t be friends, that doesn’t mean we have to be enemies.
With respect, tolerance, and an open mind, anything is possible.
Your friend (the optimist),