The holidays are a great opportunity to take a breather from the daily grind and enjoy some quality time with friends and family----- once the shopping mania is complete, that is!
Although a time for joy and merriment, I'm sure many of you may find yourselves confronted by someone who holds opposing views to your own this holiday season, be it your "old school" uncle who tells it like it is, or your tree-hugging cousin home from another planting excursion.
This year, instead of seeing these perspectives as wrong, how about engaging in conversation with them?
Over the last year or two, I've noticed an increase in toxicity between opposing sides, or, possibly just as bad, joint denunciation of an "out group" by those who share the same views.
These reactions degrade the level of trust within our society. If we see someone as wrong without empathizing with their perspective, it's easier for us to build a wall between us and them, distrusting their reasons rather than trying to understand them. And the less trust in a society, the more likely various issues are to arise that divide and hurt it.
Even more, being closed-minded and shutting down opinions that challenge our own can seep into our personal lives as well. An unwillingness to challenge ourselves, reassess our views, and self-reflect, creates a blind spot that can even prevent us from achieving personal goals or accepting when those goals have changed and evolved.
In the investment world, blind stubbornness can be financially devastating. I know advisors who are still searching and waiting for their junior mining stock to cash in...and they're in their 70s.
Blindly attempting to prove we are right is an exercise in ego protection. It's wasted time and effort better spent listening and understanding those around us. In fact, it's the people who are actively trying to figure out where they're wrong who are usually the most thoughtful and successful in achieving their goals.
So let's make this holiday season a collaborative exercise in compassion, listening, and open-mindedness in search of a greater truth.
I'll be taking some time off the newsletter until January 11, so have a safe and happy holiday season everyone!!