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If everyone is uniquely made, doesn’t that make us all diverse? Shouldn’t we respect and value everyone? I believe that if we viewed everyone from the perspective of their uniqueness we might not even need a term like “diversity.” It would simply be normal that no one is actually normal! How can there be a “normal” when every one is different?

But we do have diversity don’t we? There are courses in University curriculum dedicated to this topic. There are management courses taught in corporations on the topic.There was a time when diversity was a term that was used when referring to differences in race, gender, and culture. As society has become more blended with people from all walks of life living and working together there is a need to increase the awareness as to the importance of the differences so they can be respected, and not cause bias. It is my opinion that the traditional view of diversity is a limited perspective.

The purer meaning of diversity from a people standpoint is anything that can be considered differences. So let’s look at this in terms of relationships. People tend to be drawn to people who are similar to themselves. Think about your better friends. My guess is that you have a lot in common with these people. This is natural. We are comfortable and easily bond with people like ourselves. We can readily relate to them. We all tend to value what we personally care about, and what is of interest to us. This is not necessarily a good thing or a bad thing; it simply is the way it is.

When it can become a bad thing is when we don’t value what we don’t care about or what does not interest us, as it relates to others. As soon as we categorize someone as different from us, we may tend to think less of them, and be dismissive of their thoughts and ideas because they are not in line with our thinking. Not only is this a very limited way to exist, but it is disrespectful of others. Everyone has value and has something to contribute in life. You can learn from anyone. How boring would the world be if everyone thought and did the same things? In analyzing your relationships, if you find that they are all similar to you, then it is time to expand your horizons. The next time you are with someone who is interested in things you don’t know much about, take a curious approach. Ask them to tell you about it? You might learn something and make a new friend!

Remember that everyone is uniquely designed and blessed and focus on appreciating this. At the same time, try to learn some of the customs of different cultures so you can make them feel welcome. This will make a vast difference in your ability to create new and lasting relationships with all kinds of people.

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