2. Respect for Ignorance

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No one knows everything.  We can learn from anyone or anything, if we allow it.  Respecting that simple concept removes the judgmental mindset that someone is attacking when communicating or asking a question.  Sometimes over analyzing what we think we know, prevents us from trying out of fear of the worse case scenario. Ignorance has its benefits as well. Not being aware of threats and possibilities, many discoveries around the world have been found due to faith and belief.  There is a balance to respecting the threat and realizing the possible benefits. But no one knows until they do it.

Having patience and respect for anyone is a must when trying to communicate.  They deserve it, as well as you do.  Respect for ignorance comes from the heart.  Walking a mile in the other shoes.  Looking at their character and integrity. Many take things too personal when they are in a position of ignorance.  This creates unnecessary arguments.  Blaming others for being condescending or trying to belittle is not productive.  Being open to learning and learning something new comes from a mindset.  Many put pressure on themselves and project that feeling out.  

Assuming someone should know because they are a certain age, in a specific field or a gender is arrogant.  We are all students to someone and a teacher to someone.  One is not better than the other just different roles.  Many forget children can teach adults.  Here is a simple story… One day there was a tractor-trailer truck driving on the highway.  There was an overpass bridge.  This is not abnormal; there are lots of overpasses.  This one had a sign “low over head” before the driver knew it the truck was wedged under the overpass.  This shut traffic down for hours.  People were out of their cars asking what is wrong, how is it going to be fixed how long? The engineers were all talking, and then a child comes up and asked, “If they could move so he could go home”.  He wanted to play in his sandbox.  They explained the truck is stuck under the bridge and they didn’t know what to do. They tried pulling it out, that didn’t work.  The child, looked at them and said, “why don’t you just take the air out of tires, so there is room”?  The engineers and crew looked at the boy and almost felt embarrassed.  They did exactly what the young boy said. It worked.  Do you think the boy judged them for not knowing? Or was happy he was heard and got to help?

One of the easiest ways to find a starting point to have an exploratory conversation is asking someone their opinion on something.  Just looking at someone we don’t know what they know. Nor would we want to discriminate and judge the book by the cover.  Far too often people judge others and create a war.  This doesn’t solve anything.  It just creates more distraction and friction.  This is a mental or ego trip.  Whatever happened to compassion, respect and wanting to create understanding to connect to someone?