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No matter how intensely people disagree, there is a basic premise upon which both sides agree.


Even on polarizing topics like gun control, the extremes on each side both want to live in a world where peaceful, honest, innocent people are protected from bad people with guns. The "how" is the debate. It's what's difficult, nuanced, emotionally charged, and can quickly lead to non-constructive personal attacks.


One way to make progress in disagreements is to keep the "golden premise" (the thing you all agree on) center stage. Continuing to reference what you DO agree on reminds both sides that they share a common interest.

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Focus is crucial not just for work or learning but for connecting with others. Attention is more valuable than time.


Try it: be fully present with someone and give them your full attention. It's so rare and unexpected that it quickly builds trust and connection.


By analogy, being "present" means to treat attention like an on/off switch, not a dimmer.

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We often inhibit our own growth by delaying habits that would benefit us immediately. My vote for the biggest culprit are the words "as soon as..."

I've been guilty of postponing valuable actions, thinking I'd do them as soon as things calm down (when will that happen?) or some event occurs.


The best time to start was yesterday. The next best time is now.

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