Open heart. Open mind.

You know what people do? They opinion shop. They feel-good shop. They justify shop. They comeraderie shop. Not only does misery love company, but so does contentment.

People are out shopping for connectedness. They want to feel good about themselves and their choices. They want to be agreed with and supported by other folks going through the same things and feeling the same feels.

I do it, and so do you. Look at the Facebook and Instagram accounts we follow. Check out the company we keep. We keep ourselves in comfortable places, don’t we?

So what? What’s the point? Well, I think we better think outside the box some. We better at read up on what the “other” folks are doing. We better listen, and be better allow our brains to be challenged. We better mix up our company and appreciate what other folks bring to the table.

And the kicker? Without arguing.

Everybody is real damn quick to put you in your place and give you a litany of reasons why you’re a horrible human of you disagree with them. Those are the people who settle into their comfort zones and ride the wave of communal safety but neglect to keep open minds and open hearts. They’re the ones who resolutely believe there is ONE way to think, ONE way to be, and ONE way to respond.

I truly believe that our differences make the world turn, but in order to keep it spinning, we have to love and let be. Does that mean we don’t take a stand on issues, take up for ourselves, or fight for or rights? No, Sir.

I think it does mean that we quit being so damn hard-headed and stop digging in our heels. We stop freaking yelling and trying to shame each other. We quit popping back with our argument and devaluing what the other person believes.

Surely, there are compromises. Surely, we can both have valid points and concerns. Surely, there is a balance, a happy medium, an accord. But that can only come with willing, open-hearted, open-minded people on both sides of the table.

I’m willing. Are you? Think about it.

What brought this on, you ask. Well, I follow a few bloggers with huge followings and lots of thoughts. They share just like me. Fine. But they also attack whomever has a different perspective and allow their following to gang up on those with differences of opinion. That don’t seem right to me.

What seems right is that open mind and open heart. Kindness. Respect. Preservation of our individual voices. Compromise. Listening.

Maybe that’s just me. If you’re confident in that zone, too, then I guess you’ve come to the right place. And if you don’t agree…I ain’t even mad.

Published by Amanda Herring, Writer

Practical wisdom, joys and pains, motivation and tough love, from the perspective of a Mississippi mom, traveler, business owner, goal crusher, substance seeker, and full-time dreamer

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