“…conservatism really does speak to and for people who have lost something. It may be a landed estate or the privileges of white skin, the unquestioned authority of a husband or the untrammeled rights of a factory owner … the chief aim of the loser is not … preservation or protection. It is recovery and restoration.” (The Reactionary Mind, 56)
In other words, conservatives are afraid of what they are potentially losing if other people have gains. Progressives are focused on well, progress, and a lot of new research seems to indicate that a certain amount of this has to do with differences in the brain. “Given that their brains are so different, it is hardly surprising that liberals and conservatives should spend so much time talking across each other and never achieving real dialog or consensus.” https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/the-human-beast/201104/conservatives-big-fear-brain-study-finds
All that being said, I too am not close to anyone who is a hard core conservative.