The Dangers of Homophily (“Love of the Same”): How Sticking to Our Own Perspectives Can Hurt Us
We all know the saying, “birds of a feather flock together.” This s homophily in action.
We are drawn to others who are similar to us because it makes us feel comfortable. We like being around people who think like we do and share our same values. However, this can be dangerous because it means we lose sight of dissenting views. When we only surround ourselves with those who agree with us, we’re shutting out valuable perspectives that could help us grow as individuals and businesses.
Technology advances at the speed of light, it seems. Online activity is deeply intertwined into our lives. Simply by using the internet to pursue our own interests, we’ve delivered tons of data to internet entities. Our data helps determine future pieces of information that show up on our phones and computers.
Our ideas in another’s voice confirms our view on life. This feels good. But we’re missing out on the entire picture. There are valid perspectives that don’t align with ours that may never make its way to our phones or computers. This can be an unfortunate situation.
Here are some tips that’ll help prevent you from going down the path towards single-mindedness:
- Make a concerted effort to seek out dissenting views. This only happens with your efforts. From personal experience, I easily discard info that doesn’t align with how I see the world. It’s a flaw I’m working on.
- Talk to people who don’t think like you do. Social media makes this easier. But these exchanges can turn confrontational and both parties will entrench themselves deeper into their corners.
- Be open to the idea that you could be wrong. You can’t control others’ thoughts. Coming into a conversation with this mentality brings down the defensive barriers and encourages open dialogue.
By following these tips, you can avoid homophily’s negative effects and become a more well-rounded individual.
This post was created with Typeshare