THE “WHAT WHY & HOW” OF TOLERANCE

From The Family Virtues Guide

WHAT IS TOLERANCE?

Tolerance is being able to accept things that you wish were different. If you are practicing tolerance and someone annoys you, you just go on and don’t pay too much attention.

When you practice tolerance, you can be flexible. Some people find it difficult to tolerate any change in the way they want things to be. They fuss and fume if it is too hot or cold, too noisy or too quiet, or something is taking too long.

When you practice tolerance, you don’t expect other to think, look, or act just like you. You accept differences. You overlook the faults of others, especially of people in your own family.

When you are practicing tolerance, you are able to sort out what is important from what is not. You show patience and forgiveness when people make mistakes. You accept what you cannot change with good grace.

WHY PRACTICE TOLERANCE?

People who don’t practice tolerance cannot stand to have anything differ from what they want or expect. They criticize, complain, and condemn people for doing things they don’t like of even for being different. They try to change other people rather than overlooking their faults. They have difficulty forgiving. Without tolerance people are unhappy most of the time, and people around them become unhappy too.

Tolerance gives us the power to stick with a situation even when it gets uncomfortable. It gives us flexibility.

When people are practicing tolerance, there is space to be and space to grow. If there is something we don’t like about each other, we overlook it out of love or friendship. This gives us all an opportunity to work on ourselves because we want to and not because we have to. When we are tolerant, we don’t allow differences to drive us apart.

HOW DO YOU PRACTICE TOLERANCE?

When you practice tolerance, you have the patience and flexibility to live with things you don’t like. You don’t expect others to be just like you. You accept differences. You don’t judge others because they look different from you.

When things are uncomfortable and cannot be changed, you accept them with good grace instead of complaining.

You forgive others instead of holding a grudge or wishing they would change. If you don’t like something about a relationship, instead of trying to change the other person, you focus on changing yourself. When you are tolerant, you can agree to disagree with someone. You don’t insist on the other person seeing things your way. Tolerance does not mean being passive when someone is unjust or abusive.

Practicing tolerance means you accept things you cannot change.

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