We live in a world that feeds our individual bias. Like children, we never want to hear the thoughts, ideas or beliefs of “the other side.” We face tremendous challenges as a nation, yet we remain stuck inside the fortress of our own “rightness.” We consume and surround ourselves with media and peers who parrot our own thinking on matters of importance to us. We are comfortable in being “right,” more than we are concerned about seeking real solutions through intelligent dialogue and compromise.
A consumer driven media feeds our narcissism. It tells us we are right – “they” are wrong – and we should never give up or surrender in any way. Like children, we never have to hear or ponder any idea or image that creates discomfort – we can exist inside a womb of our own creation.
Not just in politics, but in every area of personal interest and beliefs – we have created small bubbles of like-minded souls – all of which exist in exclusivity – no “non – believers” allowed. So we only hear what we want to hear.
Real growth, change and maturity can only occur if we are provoked, questioned and challenged on a regular basis. The validity of our beliefs need to be tested – the reasons we believe what we do need to be vetted – we need to truly see all of the sides of an issue and have compassion for other views and experiences – to know that the “solutions” are meant to meet the needs and demands (to whatever extent is possible) of everyone involved – not our personal interests alone. A valid belief or idea will stand the test of discussion and questioning.
This is uncomfortable. That is why our blood begins to boils when we see the face or hear the words of “the other side.” This is an emotional reaction that reflects an insecurity in our own thinking. Their thoughts and ideas “complicate” our own – make things cloudy and less focused. We don’t like the feeling of uncertainty and will avoid any truth to maintain our own personal “rightness.”
Solutions are often simple – they are just not everything we want – they challenge us to grow, think and change. If you want to be “right” – stay in your bubble. If you want to influence others for the good – you need to get uncomfortable.
Be Strong. Stay Hungry. Walk Tall.