If you spend your life thinking you know what’s right, you’re never going to be free. True freedom is being able to think for yourself, regardless of your own beliefs and the friends around you.
Yes, even your friends can control your thoughts.
Of course, this is not to say that you should throw out all your beliefs. Having beliefs is important to your mental wellbeing. Your beliefs add power to your every step, especially the belief that you are doing a great job today. Believe that!
But when too many people contradict one of your beliefs, perhaps it’s time to open your mind and do some research. And no, not cherry-picking. I mean actual proper research. Getting both sides, assessing the pros and cons, weighing up the plausibility and finally readjusting your beliefs.
If you need more reason to be open-minded, here are five reasons why you should be:
For a stronger sense of self
It’s impossible to know yourself when you’re following the thoughts of everyone around you. When you’re closed-minded, you are unable to explore who you really are. You are essentially stuck in a bubble with only those who think like you.
Get out of that bubble! See the world for what it really is – in all its curious colours. Because when you open your mind to the world, you gain a stronger sense of self.
For tighter relationships
The survival of any relationship requires an open mind. This means listening to what your partner, relative or friend is saying so you can find a compromise that works for both of you.
How will you do that if you’ve got a closed mind?
Of course, having an open mind doesn’t just save relationships, it also strengthens them too. With an open mind, you are able to discern when things are beginning to strain and when things are going well. You can also allow yourself to explore new sides of the relationship. Whether it’s in the bedroom with your partner or when planning an outing with your friend.
Strengthen your relationships by being open-minded.
For finding opportunities
When you have a stronger sense of self, you know exactly what you want. But knowing what you want doesn’t get you the opportunities; you can only get opportunities when you actively identify them.
According to leadership guru Stephanie Mead, those who “discipline themselves to look at the world around them with an open mind stand on a balcony where they are better-positioned to see windows of opportunity.”
You can’t just look at the world and hope for the best, you’ve got to know what you’re looking for. Even if it’s simply an idea. When you look with purpose and an open mind, you not only find the right opportunities, but you can also discover ones that you never thought existed.
With an open mind, you can find amazing opportunities.
For a just society
Justice requires an open mind, too. A judge’s sole job is to listen to both sides and come to an agreement. But society needs to listen too.
When people protest, they protest for a cause. And if you don’t listen, they will only get louder. Identifying the cause of any conflict is the first step to resolving it.
When you watch the news, don’t listen to one side. Listen to all sides. Make your own judgement. Take control of your own thoughts and make better judgements.
There are people out there who need to be heard, and you can hear them with an open mind. And once you hear them, you can work towards a compromise that benefits everyone.
You’re not the only one living on planet earth.