What if there was no Like…?

Every time I open a social media service, I find myself contemplating removing myself from it’s tenacious and compelling clutches. Yet I cannot cut this cord. I cannot cut this cord that connects me to my friends in the southern hemisphere. I cannot cut this cord that connects me to my family; to my long-lost (and found again) friends. To my past (and current) co-workers. I cannot.

I don’t post very much, if at all, beyond re-sharing political and social articles that reflect my own beliefs, contributing to the “echo-chamber effect”. Do I think this one article, video, photo, tweet, will somehow change that one persons view on how the world should function? No. Not really. In my heart, I hope it does. In my head, I know it won’t.

Viewpoints are rarely, if ever, swayed by reading about someone’s experience or perspective. That needle might move when our own experience is subject to sufficient pressure. But it doesn’t alway move in a rational direction. Our biases not only affect our perspective, they affect our transformation.

Until we can counter our biases, our viewpoints will remain fixed.

In my graph of family, friends, co-workers, acquaintances, I know that my views and all of theirs have a very small point of common intersection. But the rest of that Venn diagram is messy! But that’s the good part, too. That mess is all of us trying to make it work. Trying to survive as a species. Trying to reach further. Trying to create a better world.

We’re each, in our own way, trying to move our collective needle to a better place. And so long as we’re willing to take a step back every once and a while, and check our biases, we will get there.

How do we check our biases? Get out of our comfort zone and talk to people “on the other side”. And by talk, I mean, ask questions and listen. Just listen. Listen until we understand.

Because clicking “Like” isn’t really communicating.

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