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Get Outside of Your Information Vacuum

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be friendly with people who hold diverse opinions

These days the world is divided and people are either with you or against you. This is bad in so many ways. On the news today I heard a reporter say that it is a negative that so many people live in their own “digital citadels of confirming information.” He, of course, was mainly referring to politics. I think it’s more than that. And it speaks to people only reading news and speaking with people who they agree with.

You shouldn’t have to agree with those you spend time with. You need to like and respect them, not agree with all of their beliefs. This doesn’t mean there may be some topics to avoid, whether a family issue or, obviously politics or religion. If you are unwilling to speak with people who think differently than you, you are doing yourself a disservice.

I love music, and especially live music. When I am at a concert, I sometimes think about the people in attendance and the differences between us. Then I think about how music brings us together. It serves as a bridge to something that connects us. The point is that despite our differences, which may be vast, there is something we could connect on and start a conversation.

And that’s all it takes, an entrée to converse with another. It may go somewhere. It may go nowhere. But real learning comes from listening to others who think and believe differently than you. If this happened more often, the majority of people wouldn’t change their thinking, but the lines of communication would be open, and the chance for understanding and compromise would exist.

As always, this post and others can be found on my blog, Business Law Guy.


About the Author: Neal Bookspan is a partner at the Phoenix, Arizona law firm of Jaburg Wilk. He assists clients with business issues, commercial litigation, workouts, and bankruptcy litigation. Neal can be reached at 602.248.1000.