Reflections

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  1. M
    Mike

    Pay attention in the Christian gospels to the way Jesus interacted with almost every individual He met. He almost always met people right where they were, without judging them on where He thought they should be. (I imagine similar examples might be found in other faith traditions.)

    1 year ago
  2. KC

    I can set an intention to be more open to people who I perceive or experience as different, and to be curious about the gifts they bring.

    Perhaps the first step is awareness – being aware when I unconsciously shut others out and / or judge, and consciously choosing curiosity. Most days offer at least a few opportunities. Observing a scene outside the window now, voila – an invitation.

    Thank you for this challenging question, and the thoughtful reflections 🙂

    1 year ago
  3. Maureen

    I think if I am comfortable with myself, flaws and all, I would be able to encounter anyone with friendliness with a certain regard for safety.

    1 year ago
  4. Malag

    Exposing to new activities and situations can allow for some diversity. Maybe when Covid is less a threat. On the other side of that, though, I am more on the introverted end of the scale so find there’s a limit to what us comfortable in terms of who is in my life.

    1 year ago
  5. d
    dcdeb

    By finding commonalities, maybe similar interests.

    1 year ago
  6. TofuLove

    By acknowledging my own pain and suffering and moving towards these things from a place of kindness and gentleness in turn I feel more inclusive of others even as they are going through difficult times as I can see my own struggles in their struggles, just expressed differently. I think you have to make peace with yourself before you can have peace with others but really I don’t know.

    1 year ago
  7. Don Jones

    Not to underestimate negative relationships. There is a deep bond with those where fear, envy or hate is present. It is time to dissolve that.

    1 year ago
  8. Cathie

    I try not to exclude anyone in my life. So for me, maybe it would be how to create opportunities specifically for folks whose gifts we don’t often call on….for example, I have relatives who use beautiful language when speaking – not my gift, – maybe I could ask them to assist me with a letter or email I will write instead of struggling with how to make it say what I mean???

    I need to think of ways to create opportunities to allow folks to use their gifts.

    1 year ago
  9. Holly in Ohio

    I have been trying to include some neighbors who were until recently, homeless. I know they have anxiety issues, but I’m beginning to think they may have drug issues as well. I have been trying to be friendly, safe, and non-judgmental. We’ve had some positive interactions several months ago, but at present they seem to be hiding from the world and we noticed their children seem to be living with the grandparents again.

    In contrast I have a dear friend of many, many years, whom recently I decided I needed to let go. They are sometimes verbally aggressive and try to manipulate me with false accusations and untruths. They don’t respect healthy boundaries… not just with me but with some mutual friends…. he doesn’t seem to even understand boundaries when it conflicts with his wishes. I tried explaining it several times to him, tried to get him to stop the random verbal attacks that come about once a month… but he doesn’t, and to me it feels like getting emotionally side-swiped. He just makes excuses or argues this. Classic.

    So when this question came up, I thought of these two extremes. I believe sometimes exclusion is necessary. Toxic relationships do happen, and it doesn’t help them our ourselves to continue them. Exclusion by type… no. I’m not fooled by the illusions that come with race, dress, language, religion, poverty… any of that. You never know what comes in a package.

    1 year ago
  10. d
    db82258

    Being present and open 💝

    1 year ago
  11. Marnie Jackson

    I try so hard to be inclusive of everyone and to recognize that everyone brings gifts. There are people though whom I don’t feel comfortable and I am sure that discomfort affects how I deal with the person and how I listen to their thoughts and ideas. Making a conscious effort to get to know people that I am not comfortable with – would be a good first step to help me better understand their gifts.

    1 year ago
  12. Katrina

    This question runs the gambit of so many different social and personal situations that it makes it difficult for me to respond. Who would I invite into my home? Who would I sit next to at a party? Who do I gravitate to in a new work or volunteer situation? And it would be awkward to go out and recruit people into a social or personal situation just so I could experience the inclusivity of gifts of diversity. That said, I do my best to receive the gifts of inclusivity and diversity wherever they arise – as I deliver Meals on Wheels, in an exercise class, while shopping or dining in public, and in making new friends. I think most of us naturally gravitate to those most like us, those with whom we think we will find a hospitable welcome, until we are comfortable enough to have a grounding to step out in faith when we can’t see the whole staircase. My husband and I do make sure our family knows they can bring any of their friends to our home regardless of anything – except drugs, weapons or violence.

    1 year ago
  13. K
    Kerry

    I guess by keeping an open mind and an open heart. Not getting caught up in gossip and having pre conceived notions of others. I am going to my son’s University this weekend. I am going to make a conscious effort to talk to everyone. Even those who I wouldn’t normally gravitate to.

    1 year ago
  14. f
    foreversaranya

    My first thought was how I exclude my family from my life. This question serves as a reminder that I can do little things to rebuild that connection with them – eating meals, small conversations about our day, etc.

    1 year ago
  15. Michele

    Smile at everyone:)

    1 year ago
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