I have a simple principle when it comes to the strength of opinions: the stronger your opinions, the more it is your responsibility to be curious.
People who combine strong opinions with high levels of curiosity lead with questions and take the time to understand the other person’s point of view.
They, then, debate and discuss with the objective of learning something.
People who have strong opinions and no curiosity just launch into their point of view. There is no listening or learning, it is only about “teaching” and moralising.
It is not just that curiosity is the difference between being interesting or annoying when you have strong opinions. It is that, without curiosity, you lose all the learning in the conversation.
So, all the attempts to teach and moralise are a waste of energy.
Learning only happens when everyone around the table are willing to be vulnerable, listen and learn themselves.
And, that can only happen if you lead with curiosity.
It always helps that if you are going to form a strong opinion about this something, you have asked some critical questions and gotten some tested insights.