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Accepting differences important for personal growth

On October 12, 2010

Everyone is different.

There are some differences that are simple. Some are more complex - things that not many people know about.

Some differences make it difficult to get along with other people. A neat freak and a slob are going to have some problems, though they can usually learn to compromise if both parties are willing.

There are other differences that are tied to self-identity. Sexual orientation, race, age, culture, sex, background and interests. When someone has a problem with differences in these areas, it is often something that runs deep in their upbringing and is very hard to change.

Differences are not a target.

They can be a point of discussion. We can talk about them.

We might still have problems with them, but at the end of the day we have to accept and move on with life.

Accepting differences can be difficult at times - yet - respecting others for their differences is necessary.

Even though some people can embrace their differences and understand that differences make us who we are, others have difficulty in finding that self-acceptance.

But making sure you let that person know you accept them, love them or care about them can make all the difference. Exploiting that person for being different isn't going to help that person, nor is it going to make you a better one.

You're in college and you still like Pokemon? That's awesome. You have Spiderman bed sheets? Cool. You're gay? No problem. The list continues.

Being able to be open about what makes you unique is also important. If you are straight-forward with others, they're less likely to say anything. If you're comfortable with it, all you may get is a chuckle.

It's important to remember that respect is key no matter what age you are. Making friends outside of your team or activity is also important to the college life experience.

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