by Tina Cherpes, Featured Contributor
Behavior Therapy – #15
MARCY BEGAN whispering “The kids were all in the game room going on and on about it so I sneaked into the bedroom and went online to check it out. While there’s no way I’ll ever get those three minutes of my life back, that ridiculous little video had more than a hundred million views; unbelievable!”
When it’s important for us to stay connected to the lives of others, we often find ourselves exploring areas of interest that may not necessarily be in sync with our own.
Most of us have heard the adage that others become interested in us when we demonstrate our genuine interest in others. Yet, what happens when our quest to genuinely connect with someone reveals preferences that are in diametric opposition to our own? When we discover for instance that our client is a big-game hunter and we lean toward vegan, or our soon to be in-laws lobby to limit reproductive rights and our preference is choice, or our child is gay and the teachings of our church are inconsistent with his or her lifestyle.
Yes we have options, we could ask one of our associates to step in and work with our big-game hunting client, or reduce the frequency of interaction with our prospective in-laws, or disassociate ourselves with our child or our church, or, we can decide the connection is important to us and endeavor to find a new path, and gain a new perspective, that we hadn’t considered.
Individual political, social, environmental, economic, and religious preferences are just a few drops in a sea of issues that have the potential to derail our efforts to genuinely connect with others. Yet when we choose to persist, we can create opportunities to connect in ways we may never have imagined possible.