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  1. Mary Pat

    Probably because I am curious by nature, most things are not a stretch for me. I love learning from someone different from me. It keeps me young at heart and of mind.

    2 years ago
  2. Malag

    Everyone I encounter offers learning. I could open up to being receptive to what they teach

    2 years ago
  3. Charlie T

    Lessons are everywhere. Even the arrogant and forcefully opinionated have something to teach me. I think about the possible motive/cause behind there unsolicited revealing of themselves. It is hard on me to be exposed to some people, but there are lessons in every situation if I am thoughtful and try and suspend judgment.

    2 years ago
  4. mam_gigi

    I have an poor habit of seeing the negative. I tend to notice people’s shortcomings, and have to resist the urge to not keep a laundry list of perceived slights or failures in myself and those around me. I think if I had the attitude of looking for others’ strengths instead of weaknesses, I would be able to learn more from them.

    2 years ago
  5. Mica

    Does it have to be a stretch?

    2 years ago
  6. O.Christina

    It rather feels to me like a natural process to learn from other fellow people, and who at all is not “like us”? while as an individual, each one of us is perfectly different? So if inside I can find the place of relating to where we all belong to, and start with loving kindness, the perceived difference is enriching my life and heart.

    2 years ago
    1. Mica

      Yes, Ose, aren’t we all different in some ways? {{{hugs}}}

      2 years ago
      1. O.Christina

        You are right, different in some ways meets it much better, thank you! 😊

        2 years ago
  7. Hot Sauce

    I can stretch myself to learn from someone different from me by centering the voices of those who are most marginalized as I formulate my own theology.

    2 years ago
  8. ADP

    Be a better listener and open to others thoughts and feelings helps us to grow. God puts people in our paths for a reason, don’t discount any daily encounters you have with other people. Take it as an opportunity to learn something from the circumstance.

    2 years ago
  9. KC

    When I am grounded and rooted in a healthy, connected heart space, I can listen, hear and respond with greater openness, curiosity, from a place of hospitality, friendship and acceptance.

    When I am not grounded, rooted etc. in a life honouring heart space, I can bring awareness and love to that inner place, pause, and return to a place where I can actively, constructively listen, hear and respond.

    Since everyone is different from me, I can stay open and curious, and need not venture far from home. That said, I have a volunteer gig in mind that could be a good launch / commitment to more regular, active listening with people whose lives differ greatly from my own. The volunteer gig is solidly rooted in community with mindful intentions and practices, so may be a proactive step forward.

    Thank you for this question and all the thoughtful reflections. I will aim for that action step this month. Peace is the way …

    2 years ago
  10. Don Jones

    Not so much a stretch, but by saying “Namaskarum” – the Divine within me acknowledges the Divine within you. Right there we have something beautiful in common to build understanding and learning.

    2 years ago
  11. Elaine

    In the years since retirement I’ve set an intention of doing just that. Through volunteer activities, I meet, engage with, and befriend people from different cultures living in my pluralistic city. It is an incredibly enriching, broadening, and humbling experience to be in their company.

    2 years ago
  12. c

    I want to take the seat of the learner. I want to allow love, knowledge, support to come through without questioning the intention of it. I can stretch myself to learn from someone different from me through forgiveness of wrong doings, and seeking peace. There is more to learn, and I want to get away from the common response of “I know,” when someone shares something new with me.

    2 years ago
    1. Elaine

      A deep insightful response. Like Barb C I resonate with the need to get away from “I know” to a place of – what more can I learn? This is a big piece of work for me framed in a non judgmental way. Thank you so much.

      2 years ago
    2. Barb C

      This last line really speaks to me. That moment when someone else has knowledge I also have–instead of showing I got there ahead of them, how could we explore together and build on what we both know? Asking questions from a place of curiosity and exploration will help me grow and learn things I *don’t* already know.

      2 years ago
  13. Chester

    I find stretching myself is best achieved by humbling myself.

    2 years ago
  14. alara87350

    How I stretched myself was to start to post. I was critical of even having “likes” just like all other sites, and then judged on why people “needed” these. I found sustenance on other parts of this site – my arrogance was still alive and well even on my new path.

    BUT, I kept reading what others wrote here each day, and absorbed the teachings/lessons for me. This whole experience has been a wonder – a crack so the light could get in. Grateful to you all for being here.

    2 years ago
  15. Diane

    I’m actually quite eager for this. Like Kevin I really don’t see this as a “stretch” This question encourages me to make that happen. I wonder how? Like Yram, my world is pretty small right now. We recently moved into a 55+ community where everyone is pretty much of the same ethnic, economic, and social backgrounds. An idea that just occured to me as I write this….like Antoinette, perhaps I can find a native speaker to help me become more fluent in Spanish. I love learning about different cultures…they all have their own unique history and deep, meaningful traditions.
    So blessed and grateful to be here with you this morning. Thank you all for your honest, thoughtful and generous sharing. ♥

    2 years ago
  16. Barb C

    I started doing this several years ago through Twitter. I know it can seem like a poisonous place but it offers the opportunity to follow, listen to, and learn from people who aren’t exactly like me. I deliberately sought out those who have been excluded from the halls of power, primarily women of color and disability justice activists. I’ve learned so much.

    It’s not a stretch for me in the sense that I was an early adopter of Twitter. The stretching comes from not speaking up and centering myself and my views, simply listening and learning and not asking for their unpaid labor to explain things I can research on my own. I am able to amplify their voices, recommend some as experts and speakers in my field, and have made real-life connections with some through conferences back when I went to those. This has enriched my life and my work and I’ve made friends.

    2 years ago
  17. Y

    My world is pretty small right now. I am looking forward to putting myself in a position to meet “different ” people.

    2 years ago
  18. Laura

    When it comes to knowledge or skills I enjoy learning. Doesn’t matter if they’re different from me or not.
    Opinions and viewpoints from others who don’t share my outlook can make learning from them more difficult. I try to remember that I can’t deny or argue someone else’s, or a group’s, life experience. In accepting another’s experience, I learn.

    2 years ago
  19. Patricia

    Most traits that are traditionally identified as “differences” are not an issue for me: race, culture or religion, nationality, sexual orientation, etc. I will confess that the “differences” I have difficulty overcoming (or ‘stretching myself’ toward) are intolerance, hate, narrow-mindedness and tribalism. I want to keep far away from those people and their toxic presence. I can feel compassion for them, that they are locked in these attitudinal prisons, but that’s all I can do….or choose to do.

    2 years ago
  20. sunnypatti48317

    I’m fortunate that in my line of work, I get to interact with people “different” from me every day. I learn from all of them. And I love it!

    2 years ago
  21. Iamme

    To be open hearted to other’s views even if they are in opposition to your own, try to understand the why behind them. We are all shaped by our lived experiences, and so whilst somethings may be inexcusable, we can at least try to understand what played a part in forming that action, belief or ideology; through that path understanding and forgiveness lays.

    2 years ago
  22. Kevin

    I don’t see learning from someone different from me to be a stretch. I see it as an opportunity. If anything, I need more of these kinds of opportunities in my life. In fact, today’s question is a good one for me to take into deeper reflection. If I truly believe in my heart that interacting and learning from more people who are different from me would be good, then why is more of it not happening?

    2 years ago
  23. Michele

    By being open-minded and being a good listener.

    2 years ago
  24. Antoinette

    I’m doing that today as a matter fact ! I’m learning Norwegian from a wonderful retired middle school principal and Norwegian teacher! I’m really enjoying learning from him. After Norwegian I am attending a painting group. I have never painted in my life other than art classes back in grade school! It’s so fun and it’s teaching to me things I never knew existed!
    I’m so grateful for being able to participate in both of these activities. Today I’m venturing out into the world of oil painting. My confidence is iffy, but I’m going for it !

    2 years ago
  25. Hermann-Josef

    It is sometimes really hard for me to learn from someone especially if i don‘t like the person to much. First I have to accept that I still have to learn a lot and to know what it is that I have to learn. Then shift the ego away a little bit and look at the teaching not at the person. After all I thank the person for giving a lesson of which I was in need. Staying in love within. Towards my feeling, myself, the teaching and that person. If I failed; let me try again next time and pray for gods help.

    2 years ago

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