Through all the empty rhetoric, insults, and name-calling Americans hear in the news, it is often difficult to see how their country’s two major political parties have anything in common. Nonetheless, figuring out similarities between opposing sides may be just what the United States needs.
According to research, one of the best ways to move forward when two people disagree is to find common ground in at least one thing. In turns out, Democrats and Republicans share many, and No Labels is helping to connect them.
1. Life Experiences
Every man and woman has a different story, but everyone has a life experience to bring to the table. Regardless of where someone comes from, what he or she does, or what beliefs he or she may have, personal experiences lead people to shape their perspectives on how they see the world.
2. Loved Ones
No two families are the same. With that said, every American has friends or family that matter to them. Sometimes, it is none other than people’s loved ones who help them form their political views. Most people want to do what is best for those closest to them.
What makes you feel alive? Whether your bumper sticker is red or blue, there is a possibility that you get your energy from fitness, photography, food, writing, teaching, or animals. In a nutshell, passion occurs when you can put single-minded focus into an activity because it gives you a sense of purpose or meaning. Discovering passions is important to all humans, no matter what their political party is.
If you are afraid of spiders, snakes, heights, flying in airplanes, or dogs, there is no way to know whose presidential campaign you contributed to, but you definitely share a top fear with millions of other Americans.
What are you good at? Chances are, it has little to do with which way you politically lean. Throughout history, world-renowned artists, thinkers, writers, and creators have emerged from both sides of the aisle.
If you have a hard time saying “no” to cake, you are not alone. You are also not alone if you struggle with saying “no” in a more general sense or if you get too caught up in the details. Other common weaknesses people have include balancing work and life, dealing with uncertainty, and lacking confidence.
7. Bad Habits
Chronic procrastinators, junk-food eaters, and over worriers unite! Whether you cannot stop biting your nails, you spend too much money when you shop, you try to control everything, or your friend tells you that you complain too much, each person has some bad habits he or she can work on. Although these types of behaviors are not ideal, they are something everyone struggles with in one way or another. Acknowledging flaws is one of the most human things you can do.
8. Good Days
Think about your favorite day. What comes to mind? While the picture might be different for every individual, Democrats and Republicans both have really good days sometimes. Often, the things that make the best days so wonderful is the same for people, regardless of political beliefs: friends, family, laughter, delicious food, sunny weather, or music.
9. Bad Days
When was the last time you had a bad day? Just like great days, everyone has terrible ones as well. From car problems to hospital bills to job losses to deaths, neither liberals nor conservatives are immune from life’s difficulties.
Of the many traits all humans share, emotions are another. While some people may be better or worse at controlling theirs than others, each person experiences feelings of joy, sadness, guilt, pain, regret, love, worry, and excitement. Emotions are very human biological responses to stimuli that everyone encounters.
What do you like doing in your free time? Regardless of your political views, there is a chance you enjoy hiking, soccer, dancing, reading, knitting, painting, football, or cooking. On the other hand, maybe you do not like any of those activities. Nonetheless, your political affiliation has nothing to do with your dance moves or baking skills.
12. Pet Peeves
What annoys you? Whether you are liberal or conservative, you may immediately think of drivers who do not use their turn signals, or maybe you hate unpleasant smells. Whatever it is that grinds your gears, experiencing minor annoyances throughout the day is something each American endures, no matter who they voted for.
There is no doubt about it: Everyone has an opinion, whether they realize it or not. Sometimes, opinions stem from truth and research, and other times they do not. If someone pays attention to politics, there may be a higher chance they have thought about their opinions, but all the same, Republicans and Democrats both have them.
By taking a moment to think about the ways you are similar to someone you disagree with, you have a better chance of seeing them as another human, and in turn, reaching an understanding. Only with understanding can true progress take place.