It took me a long time to realise that most of my opinions didn’t actually belong to me.
Fifteen years ago, most of my opinions came from my home environment. From school. From friends. From family. (I’ve since discovered that I don’t agree with a wide spectrum of my Mum’s opinions!)
Speaking to my sister is like speaking to a clone of my Mum, because she’s never really left home. Her opinions are still valid, but they aren’t really hers. She didn’t arrive at them on her own.
I don’t think we do ever truly form our own opinions. I think to varying degrees we absorb the opinions of others, depending on the quality of thought that has gone into the opinion, and the degree to which it meshes with our existing worldview. New information is never used in isolation.
What I’m trying to cultivate here is an environment where it’s okay to stand alone, when you need to. A place where it’s okay to talk about things that people in your space are scared to talk about, or even scared to listen to. A place where opinions and “best practice” are questioned, not rehashed.
That’s where the real value is.