I asked a preschooler, “Do you like Broccoli?” He said, “I like it very much….I just don’t like to eat it.”
Some people have a hard time accepting things they do not like. We have politicians we seem to love or hate. We have neighbors who have barking dogs and neighbors who rake leaves that tend to go into our yards. We drive in traffic when drivers cut us off and make rude gestures at us as we try to merge. There are religious groups that do not make sense to us and, in all honesty, seem ridiculous. There is a lot in our lives that we just do not like to accept.
It is easy to write people or things off and say, “I just don’t like them. I shouldn’t have to like everything or everyone.” However, what if we lived in this preschooler’s world where we could say, “Yes, I do like you very much, I just don’t want to fully embrace everything about you.” What if we would welcome people just like they are with their thoughts and doubts and not be so quick to judge them?
It is true we should not embrace every aspect of people’s lives. We don’t have to endorse what they believe in. However, if we would try to like them very much, we may just be able to accept them more. We really can like something without eating it all up.
- What food is “broccoli” in your life? What do you not like to eat?
- Can you think of a person or type of person that you struggle liking?
- What could be different in your life or the world if you could try to accept people while not endorsing them?
“I do not like broccoli. And I haven’t liked it since I was a little kid and my mother made me eat it. And I’m President of the United States and I’m not going to eat any more broccoli.”
George H. W. Bush