TOLERATION: CONDESCENSION OR COMPREHENSION?

In the right poster, the National Institute for Drug Abuse describes tolerance as no longer responding to the same level of drug use; it takes more medication to numb the senses. Yet in the poster to the right under the National Institute for Drug Abuse picture, Morgan Scott Peck, a psychiatrist and best-selling author of The Road Less Traveled, has a different definition: “Share our similarities, celebrate our differences.” Two diametrically different perspectives, or are they?

Could it be that individuals who broke barriers by sharing similarities and celebrating differences in the past, established new barriers that today are again considered status quo? Status quo tends to morph slower than the eye can detect, somewhat like the erosion of a shoreline, unless a dramatic event like a tidal wave dramatically alters the landscape. Societies become set in their ways unless determined individuals again force change upon them. Consider the evolution of civil rights, or on a much simpler issue, fashion. Why in the world would someone play tennis or golf in a suit and tie in early 1900’s?  Because it was “tradition.” Why do some people eat with a knife and fork, while others dine with chopsticks? Tradition. Why are some churches gilded in gold artifacts throughout, where others have a no symbolism whatsoever?  Tradition. Wars are waged over “tradition.”

As you live life in crescendo and pursue your dreams, there will be roadblocks in the form of tradition that you must navigate to be successful. If your message and mission are highly important to you, and certain individual who could help you to succeed stand in your way, here are some suggestions to consider:

  1. Chances are there are legitimate reasons for putting you off.  What you need to accomplish is in conflict with this person’s beliefs or aspirations.
  2. Thanks to the Matrix Map of Social Media, you should have no problem researching what is truly important to an individual. Find connective points with that person to understand what is truly important to him or her.
  3. Read Networlding methodologies on how to form “mutually beneficial relationships for transformational opportunities.” You’ll be transformed.
  4. If you are being politely denied, or being condescended to, the absolute worst thing you can do is to condescend back. Gandhi, King and Mendala would agree. The only way to achieve comprehension, not condescension is through collaboration.
  5. Remember, it’s a “yes and” world. How many times has someone said, “I understand what you are saying, BUT…” Can you find a way to say, “Yes, and another thing to consider…”
  6. Patience is a virtue, but consider alternative strategies either around an individual or concessions that you are willing to give up in order to achieve your primary goal.  If you don’t believe that this goes on every day, then research the political process in any government legislative body or major for-profit or non-profit organization.
  7. Remember that any doubting Thomas that wants to dissuade you from your goals is living life in decrescendo. That’s not your game.

Dale Carnegie, world-famous author, for his courses on How to Make Friends and Influence People, once said, “I am very fond of strawberries and cream, but I have found that for some strange reason, fish prefer worms. So when I went fishing, I didn’t think about what I wanted. I thought about what they wanted. I didn’t bait the hook with strawberries and cream. Rather, I dangled a worm or grasshopper in front of the fish.”

Remember this as you pursue your life in crescendo.

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