Tolerance is INPowering

ChangeDiversity I want to make the case for tolerance as an INPowering quality.

Being tolerant does not require me to agree with or believe in other worldviews. Toleration only requires me to allow those views their space.

A fanatic is someone who won’t change his mind and can’t change the subject. And I’m not just talking about sports. Hard core fanatics are intolerant of any disagreement with, or deviation from, their view of the world. This applies to politics, religion, culture, or social issues. They have a way of sewing seeds of suspicion and hate toward anyone who is a threat to their opinion of the way they say things ought to be. Fanatics recruit for their cause by preying on the fears and apprehensions of others. They scream that any deviation must not be tolerated, “These deviants are a threat to our very way of life.”

Being INPowered challenges me to be curious about those views. Because I am confident in my own beliefs and identity, I want to see what I can learn from those who are different from me.

Change and diversity are life-giving processes. It’s the unusual, the unexpected, and the odd that surprise us, thrill us, and renew us.

The cross pollination of ideas comes from diversity. Sure, we find some comfort in sameness and predictability, but learning and growth come from stirring things up and living on the edge of the comfort zone instead of retreating to the safe room where no new experiences can penetrate. Intolerance leads to isolation. Tolerance leads to involvement. Intolerance breeds repression and annihilation. Tolerance breeds interaction, creativity, and life. INPowering leaders can integrate divergent viewpoints. They help filter the good, promising perspectives of disparate ideas toward new solutions that would not have been considered in the hate talk of intolerance.

We are hungry for INPowering leaders to step up and make a difference by bringing together those who are different. I’m sorry, but I have to say that today’s politicians spend more time pandering to constituent groups. They are, instead, following the lead of the fanatics who can scream the loudest. They are, instead, cowering to the intimidation of the intolerant. They are, instead, more concerned with preserving their place than leading us to a new and better place. They are non-inpowered and uninspiring. They (and I mean those of all political parties) neither speak to me, nor for me.

The INPowered, of their own will, take positive action to improve themselves so they can make things better for themselves and others.

Practice tolerance as a first step toward being INP2L arrow logo

The art of collaboration

2 girls face offI keep hearing that politics is the art of compromise. To that I say, “B.S.! and l won’t compromise on that.”

The real art is collaboration.

Collaboration and compromise are fundamentally different in approach and frame of mind.

Compromise begins with a demand that you get your way. Then, you haggle and haggle and haggle until you run out of energy, or time, or both. Then, when you realize that you can’t get your way, you are open to compromising. You give a little, and live to fight another day.

It’s exhausting and counter productive, and compromise doesn’t move your life and relationships forward constructively.

Collaboration, in contrast, is transformative.

Collaboration involves opening yourself up to possibilities instead of limiting yourself to positions.

Collaboration invites the discovery of new directions, new insights, and new solutions you would have otherwise not considered.

Collaboration invites you to get to know the issues, the situations, the needs of others, and the rich treasure of human creativity.

Collaboration requires you to suspend your own opinions and judgments, and listen, and learn, and be open to a range of perspectives and beliefs that might be outside your comfort zone.

Collaboration requires you to stretch yourself into new, transformative ways of thinking and being – to explore your boundaries – to be renewed. That’s an art.

Practice the art of collaboration, and you will become more
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Choosing to be self-Response-able

Self-Response-able promise

Here’s an every day resolution to begin the new year. Choose to be self-response-able.

The self-Response-able are INPowered because they choose to find ways to respond in the most appropriate and effective ways to be better and to make things better for themselves and others.

The self-Response-able are solution finders, possibility seekers, life-long learners.

When you choose to be self-Response-able, you are on your way to being
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