I have recently realised something about myself; I have a lot of opinions. I know, I know – state the fucking obvious Michaela.
When I was in Ireland a while back I remember looking for an article to show my friend on my Facebook wall that I had shared previously and that’s when it hit me – a lot of my posts had been politically charged or about sensitive issues such as sexual abuse, being part of the LGBTQ community, feminism, sexism… you catch my drift; all topics that easily divide opinions.
The first thing that ran through my head was “wow, I bet my friends roll their eyes at all my posts and shares.” I was sorry that I had opinions. Then when I really thought about that knee jerk reaction I had to seeing my own posts I became annoyed – at me. I was sorry? WHAT NOW? Why would I not share something that I find interesting just because someone I connect with on social media might disagree with it? It’s more likely that they just scroll right pass it and don’t think about it.
Opinions. We’ve all got one, right?
Opinions are healthy, opinions mean we are interested and engaged in what is going on around us; in our lives and in the world.
We don’t all have to agree on everything; it isn’t natural for us to. That doesn’t mean we should stop forming, having and expressing opinions. There is nothing I love more than a healthy debate so I personally really enjoy when people have differing opinions. I’d like to think that my opinions are based on a healthy mix of common sense, education about the topic at hand and perhaps a dash of empathy where necessary. I’d also like to presume that everyone elses opinion are based on this mix but one look at the comments section on pretty much ANY online article and I find myself realizing that this is very, very wrong.
You can learn a lot from people who have different opinions and in turn you teach them a lot. What cannot be condoned though is ignorance and, to a point, stubbornness. Opinions are changeable but without that willingness to learn and communicate or process new information in an objective way you will never grow and will probably end up quite a lonely person – I mean, who wants to be around someone who thinks they are ALWAYS right? Not me, sister!
I have always been an opinionated little ratbag. I remember people giving me shit in school for it when I was about 10 years old. Back then it bothered me, now not so much. Why would I chose to stay silent about things I feel strongly about, especially on my own social media? Perhaps more importantly, why should I feel I should keep quiet?
One day I may become so un-bothered by the world and not give a hoot anymore but until then if you dislike me and my opinions then please remove yourself from my social media profiles.
Right, I’m off to sign up for opinions anonymous.
Ciao for now