When I have a conversation, especially one that's online and lacks facial cues and context, here's what I promise to bring to the table, especially if we have unaligned or differing perspectives:
- all of my replies are with grace and kindness. I will not belittle, begrudge or look down on your perspective as long as it is respectful of life.
- I will do my best to understand it before I make assumptions based on my own experience.
- I want to expand my perspective by understanding others and I appreciate when others choose to do the same regarding mine. Though it doesn't change my style of engagement, It does go along way in how long/active I'll be in engagement.
My perspective in most conversations is deeply rooted in the fact that I care about people's safety, health, well-being and ability to live their best life within the constraints of what I consider basic moral principles (what we do as humans shouldn't harm others mentally, emotionally, spiritually or physically). I want to create spaces for all people to feel included, safe and able to dream big. A significant part of this is to explore to understand and to reduce the burdens imposed by our current systems.
When I approach a conversation it will always be from the mindset that I want to see the picture as big and as detailed as possible. Oftentimes this comes in the form of genuine exploratory quotations (not Socratic method questions) and I appreciate when people engage in those questions with an open mind and kindness, knowing that I'm trying to see the world as close to the way they do.