Simon Terry

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Ranting for Beginners

Our world offers many opportunities for a great rant. The magic of the internet and social media is that your rant can find its audience no matter what your topic or preferences. Look around great rants are everywhere. Sadly, rants don’t create change. Only working together with others matter.

Ranting can be extremely satisfying. There is an emotional reward in getting something off your chest. Ranting is working out loud on steroids. The key difference is there is much less rigour about choosing a relevant audience. Rants find their audience. Even if they disagree, people appreciate the emotion and eloquence of a well phrased rant.

Unfortunately, a rant is an exercise in extremism. A good rant highlights divisions and differences. It portrays a stark difference between the engaged voice of reason and the Other. Rants foster engagement at the edges. They don’t build the engagement of a civil society. They don’t drive change.

Rants don’t lead to change because they release tension. Our reaction to a rant if we agree is ‘Yes. Glad Somebody said it.’ Rich with emotional satiation we don’t feel the tension to act. The reaction to a rant of we disagree is a heightening of tensions, increasing alienation and loss of shared ground.

Ranting is fine as an emotional outlet. Just don’t expect it to create change. Swap your rant for a conversation and find a way to work with others instead.


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