If you’re heavily involved in day-to-day politics or even only slightly informed, chances are you have come across someone who has opposing opinions than you. While you may agree that your stance is the correct one, it is still important to discuss and try to understand opposing viewpoints. This doesn’t mean changing your beliefs, morals, or thinking, but understanding the opposition’s reasoning behind why they vote differently can be beneficial not only to you but also to the country. Here are 5 reasons why.
1) You will understand different outlooks and ideologies
While understanding why you believe what you do is a strong tool, understanding why the other person believes what they believe may sometimes prove to be even stronger. Talking and discussing topics with others who disagree with you will not only reaffirm what you believe, it will also give you deeper insight into why others don’t agree with you. By strengthening your own understanding of both sides, you can use it to form an even stronger foundation for your own views.
2) You will form stronger foundations for your current beliefs
Having your beliefs critiqued and questioned not only forces you to think critically but also may cause you to reaffirm why you believe something. You may believe that the minimum wage should not be raised, but when asked about it you may not know the economics behind why you believe that. Having your defenses tested not only strengthens your arguments but it also quickly displays where your weaknesses are. Use discussion opportunities to strengthen those weaknesses and be better informed and prepared for next time.
3) You will learn acceptance (not the liberal kind)
People disagree with you. But it will be okay. You know that already though.
4) You will improve your debating skills
Being able to convey your stance in a clear, concise way is a massive strength when you are trying to convince people of your side. Through talking with others who disagree, you will cognitively develop your skills of how to convey your message clearly. Good practice makes perfect, so make sure you’re having good, quality discussions and not participating in a scream fest.
5) You may find common ground
While being in an echo chamber surrounded by those who only agree with you is not beneficial, finding a topic or stance that you and an opposer agree on can be. If strengthens the bond and draws the two of you closer together. Agreement can be a powerful tool, and if you use it to your advantage, you can even use it to even convince.
Discussion is one of the unique and powerful forms of conversation that human beings have. When used correctly, it can be used to spread the truth in a sensible, logical way.