If you’ve read my book Homeless to Billionaire: The 18 Principles of Wealth Attraction and Creating Unlimited Opportunity, you would know how much I value a harmonious work environment that is free from all types of negativity, whether it is gossip and jealousy or unconstructive criticism. Over the years, I have actively tried to promote positivity in my companies. I try my best to give compliments and rewards generously when due. I give recognition to my employees who are proactively taking steps to become better at what they do, even though they may not be where they want to be just yet. Every year, I take my best-performing employees on adventures. This allows them to learn to get along with their colleagues and have a once-in-a-lifetime experience at the same time.
I have realized that there is one crucial thing that trumps all others when it comes to nurturing a healthy work environment – tolerance.
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What is tolerance?
According to the Cambridge Dictionary, tolerance is the willingness to accept behavior and beliefs that are different from your own, even when you might not agree with or approve of them.
You may think that tolerance is common courtesy, and assume that, naturally, everyone has this trait. Unfortunately, that is not the case. If you look closely, you might see signs of intolerance on a day-to-day basis.
Not so long ago, the popular talk show host Ellen DeGeneres was spotted hanging out with the former U.S. President George W. Bush at a football game in Dallas. This caused Twitter users to go into a frenzy as many criticized DeGeneres, a gay liberal, for spending time with Bush, a conservative Republican who opposes almost everything DeGeneres stands for.
Do you know how DeGeneres responded to the controversy? She said, “I’m friends with George Bush. In fact, I’m friends with a lot of people who don’t share the same beliefs that I have. Just because I don’t agree with someone on everything doesn’t mean that I’m not going to be friends with them. When I say, ‘Be kind to one another,’ I don’t just mean those who think the same way as you. I mean, be kind to everyone.”
The fact that many people were intolerant towards DeGeneres’ tolerance of others’ opinions shows just how intolerant we can be. If anything, we should strive to be more like DeGeneres.
Why should we be more tolerant?
- Tolerance allows people from different walks of life to co-exist together peacefully, creating unity.
- Being tolerant of differences creates a learning opportunity as you explore different cultures and ways of thinking.
- You articulate your thoughts and ideas by explaining them to those with different thinking.
- You practice respect and patience; two virtues that make you a better person.
- By being tolerant, you rid yourself of negativity and proactively strive for positivity.
There are many benefits to being tolerant that positively impact the workplace and society as a whole. We should all take time to reflect upon and review our values and behavior. We should treat others just as we want to be treated. After all, tolerance leads to acceptance.
About Andres Pira – philanthropist, real estate tycoon, author, speaker, and global citizen. Andres Pira enjoys living in Thailand, where his journey began from Homeless to Billionaire.
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