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From the Front Porch: Peacemakers

July 31, 2011 1 comment

We live in a world of constant strife and upheaval. Strife is not something limited to  fighting in foreign countries or Congressional leaders fighting with each other over our national debt crisis. Strife also occurs with colleagues and supervisors in our jobs, social circles and even in our most important, significant relationships. So, in a world steeped in strife, what does it take to find true, lasting peace these days?

We  can find genuine, lasting peace when we are other-person oriented, take time to listen to each other and make personal sacrifices that seek the others’ best interests and not our  own.  For example, I’m a classroom teacher at both high school and university levels.  Even though these two groups of people are vastly different, there is one thing they have in common — the need to learn. One of the defining principles in education is that teachers become other-person oriented, sacrificing self-interest for the best interests of each student.  This is also an excellent principle to apply to all of our interpersonal communication.

Listen, ask clarifying questions, seek to understand the other person’s point of view before expressing your own, respond appropriately, and look for win-win solutions. These are the things that make for peace.  Today, be a peacemaker. Do the things that make for peace.

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