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They are the movers and shakers of the world, encouraging others to step out of their comfort zones and explore what this life has to offer. Refusing to be held down or limited by the bias and labels accepted by so many others, they live a life of great potential.

While many will aim to be among this incredible group of people when put to the test most of us will fall short. Why? Because it’s not always easy, despite the fact they make it look that way.

If you have one of these amazing people in your social circle, don’t take them for granted! Appreciate their unique view of the world around us and nurture their curiosity at every opportunity.  Do you feel like this describes you? If you are one of the few truly open-minded people in this world, know that we see you and we appreciate all that you bring to society. Continue to be yourself, don’t allow the negativity of this world to change you!

Here are 17 admirable qualities of those who are truly open-minded:

#1 – Non-Judgmental

Even if this person has already heard another side of the story (lets face it, news travels fast) they aren’t going to allow that to color their opinion of you. Instead, they will listen to your side with respect, wanting to have a full idea of everything that occurred, and acknowledging that they don’t know without being there.

#2 – Comfortable Going Against the Grain

It’s not that they actively seek out opportunities to be ‘different,’ but open-minded people understand that sometimes you have to be willing to step out of your comfort zone and swim up current if you are going to make the necessary changes to make life easier for everyone. After all, the current trend isn’t always the best or ‘right’ approach. They question the status quo and are willing to take steps to amend it if needed.

#3 – Incredibly Sympathetic

Due to their ability to see all sides of every story, they are also able to better understand how or why someone may be feeling a certain way. Removing a personal bias or need to push an agenda empowers them to connect with people on a deeper level, better understanding what they are experiencing. They don’t need to feel something first hand to sympathize with those who do.

#4 – Great Problem Solvers

By removing their own personal bias from a situation, open-minded people make the best mediators and problem solvers. They are able to see all angles of a situation, assessing the positive and negative possible outcomes and helping people to find the best solution. This is why they are often the friend that everyone calls for advice.

#5 – Highly Inquisitive About Life’s Opportunities

They never judge an activity, location or experience until they have tried it first hand, which makes them a great person to be around. Whether you want to take them to a tiny hole-in-the-wall restaurant that they have never heard of, or you’re eager to try something more adventurous in the great outdoors, this is the person that you call on to join in on the fun.

#6 – Not Easily Offended

Have you noticed that everything in today’s society seems to offend someone in some way? We, as a people, spend our lives focused on how others are actively trying to hurt or upset us, when often these actions are completely innocent. Rather than assuming that every action has a negative intention, open-minded people approach by giving others the benefit of the doubt. Don’t be fooled though, they can see when someone is actively trying to get under their skin, and they aren’t afraid to make it known when someone is crossing the line.

#7 – Embrace Change

While most of our society is working hard to avoid change and keep everything the same as it is today, within their comfort zone, this isn’t true for those open-minded individuals among us. They are able to look at the situation from all angles, opening their eyes to the possibility that comes from a new approach or way of life. This encourages the idea of change, always working towards the best life that they can create.

#8 – Great Conversationalists

When someone is open-minded they are willing to entertain any conversation with respect for all parties involved. There is no attempt to force you to accept their opinion, and they won’t shut you down just because you don’t fully agree. Instead, they will take the time to actually listen to everyone, open to trying to understand their point of view.

#9 – Vast Musical Collection

If you are looking for the opportunity to be exposed to new styles, genres and types of music, this is the person to ask! Their collection spans generations and stylistic differences, open to all types of music. Due to the fact they refuse to judge an artist by the style they identify with, unlike those who, for example, say they don’t like country and refuse to listen to it, they are able to find artists from all walks of life whose music genuinely speaks to them.

#10 – Great Sense of Humor

Due to their ability to see all sides of a situation, open-minded people are often able to see humor in situations where others may miss it. They truly believe that life is taken too seriously by those that are always focused on pushing an agenda and embrace humor in all areas of their lives. While they aren’t going to be jumping on board with hateful or judgmental jokes against any group of people, they aren’t opposed to the occasional ‘tasteless joke’ within reason.

#11 – Respectful of Differences

While they are always open to hearing the opinions, views and beliefs of others, this isn’t to say that they are always going to accept them as their own or agree with them. This doesn’t stop them from treating everyone that they meet with complete respect until such time that they no longer deserve it. For example, they aren’t going to judge someone’s differing views, however, if you are openly hateful and judgmental towards others then they aren’t going to accept that as okay.

#12 – They See Solutions Rather Than Giving Up

We live in an incredibly negative world, so it is no surprise that there are a number of people who jump to the ‘society is screwed’ point of view rather quickly. An open-minded individual, however, sees things a little differently. While they acknowledge that things may suck right now (because they do), rather than focusing on the negativity and throwing in the towel, they start to explore what that could mean for the future, and what options are available. For example, in the face of political unrest or distrust, they see an opportunity for change and reforms in our country’s political system.

#13 – Patrons of the Arts

Open-minded people don’t feel the need to follow trends or fit into ‘what’s currently happening’ in society, which leaves them open to exploring the indie artists, the new authors and those that haven’t yet broke through to the mainstream. They admire the work of these individuals and are more than willing to support them in their journey. In fact, you will likely find their homes full of examples of the indie arts.

#14 – Highly Observant

The fact that open-minded individuals want to understand all sides of every situation means that they are always keeping their eyes, minds and hearts open to the world around them. They notice even the smallest of details, piecing it all together to create a bigger, more complete picture of life.

#15 – Generous with Their Time

Regardless of what you need in the moment, open-minded people are the ones that are willing to carve time out of their busy schedule to make it happen. It could be a quick conversation, a supportive hug, help moving, or a date to the latest family wedding. Whatever it is, don’t be afraid to ask them when you’re needing something. They will do everything they can to be there for you, but know if they can’t make it happen, that it wasn’t for lack of trying!

#16 – Always Honest

It’s not that an open-minded person consciously decides not to lie in any situation, they simply don’t see any value in doing so. Most people who lie are using this dishonesty as a means of pushing their agenda, shutting down those who may oppose them, or avoiding the ramifications of their decisions and actions. Given that they prefer to see the whole truth rather than a biased opinion, there is nothing that they feel they need to lie about to protect or empower.

#17 – Playful and Fun

Curious, mischievous and unafraid of life’s experiences, open-minded people bring a childlike playful quality to life, and it’s contagious! They spark laughter, fun and excitement in all those around them, helping them to see life in a new light. Sure, they sometimes may come across a little foolish or childish, but you can’t deny that they bring a smile to your face in the process.

Image via Conscious Reminder