The algorithms of social media encourage polarization. However, I do not mean this in some conspiratorial way. To the contrary, the programming that determines what we see on social media combines several metrics, including, but not limited to: (1) words and phrases that reflect high interest subject matter, (2) attention demonstrated by others regarding certain…

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Division and strife dominate the news cycle once again. The ability of people and the media to pivot so quickly from division over candidates to division over pandemic policies of various kinds to division over ethnicity and injustice boggles the mind. It appears impossible for people in today’s world to engage in serious issues without…

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So. Much. Anger. No matter where you turn today, angry people seem to dominate discourse. It has become extremely difficult to find a reasonable discussion that focuses on facts, thought, reason, and balance—regardless of the subject matter. The entire temperament of society currently revolves around having a “hot take” rather than having an informed opinion. Clearly…

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Before Athens clashed with Sparta or Rome defeated Carthage, the quest for geopolitical power dominated international relations as nations vied for control of neighboring regions to gain power over natural resources or strategic economic routes. Since that time similar concerns have dominated the rise of global leaders. While the scale of power has increased significantly—geographically,…

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Good communication skills rank among the highest of traits employers desire. Whether that falls into the realm of public speaking, writing understandable reports, or simply letting a manager know of an upcoming absence, the ability to communicate well helps others feel more informed, engenders trust, and prevents countless problems. Indeed, a brief review of those…

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No one shows up in your life with a sticker on the lapel saying, “I am a gossip,” no matter how helpful that warning might prove. Similarly, to my knowledge, no one on Twitter, Facebook, or any other social media site provides a profile picture that reads, “Cagy Internet Troll.” Instead, we must figure these…

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We live in a world of hate. Indeed, headlines reflect a lack of incivility in America that hearkens back to the days of fistfights in Congress, social media outlets keep inventing new rules to curb people’s zest for malice—except for instituting expectations of true human decency, and the various entertainment venues to which people formerly…

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Since at least the end of World War II, American society has emphasized education as the path to success. This likely grew out of the practical experience of the Great Depression, as countless workers lost jobs and seemed at the mercy of their more educated counterparts. However, over time, the American system of higher education—whether…

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Any discussion that includes some level of disagreement requires greater communication skills than most people maintain in their arsenal. Instead, people tend to avoid disagreement in favor of the comfortable confines of self-affirming opinions offered by friends or they resort to mocking the other person and his position, usually with an assumption built on a…

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Criticism of any kind hurts to some extent. No matter how much you love and respect the person offering criticism and how much you know that person loves and respects you, criticism—no matter how constructive—comes with a great deal of pain. Sometimes this pain is rooted in the realization that the criticism is valid, and…

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