Monday, June 1, 2009

I sometimes wonder...

...if others stop and try to connect the dots in their lives?  Of course, everyone takes the time to reflect on their lives to some degree--you wouldn't be a human being if you didn't.  But what I really mean is--are they aware enough of their surroundings and the circumstances that others go through?  Does anyone ever feel like they hit the nail on the head when they puzzle over the mystery of a relative's odd behaviour and the motives behind a friendly employee?  Is a strong revelation ever reached when considering one's quality of life and one's relationship with others?

I was a precocious kid.  I'm not saying I was smarter than my peers, or that I was like a fully matured adult at the age of six.  What I mean is that I was always analyzing things.  I became perhaps too sympathetic, and others took advantage of that sensitivity.

Nowadays, I find it becoming a strength.  It's helped me deal with some situations at work, and also dodge some shady situations when socializing out of my usual element.  The most obvious benefit of this awareness is in my writing, where I can easily create a character with conflicts and individual tastes.

Again, I'm not saying I'm the most attentive person in the world, but when I put it into practice I can usually see the reasoning behind a dilemma or a good situation.  I find this to help diffuse anger or sadness.  In the case of bad things, this doesn't necessarily give me the answer to my problems, just the means to find it.  A few times, I've come to the conclusion that the most effective way to solve the problem is to speak with whoever I'm having the altercation with.  

...And there's where I typically hit a wall.

In writing, I find it cathartic to have my characters go through tough obstacles, only to solve it and reach a common understanding.  In the real world, however, I find it frustrating, because it seems like I can't get others to get where I'm coming from.  I try to talk to them as respectfully and as clearly as possible, only to have them shut me down out of stubborn pride or impatience.  Narcissism and ignorance have been the handicaps of man since the dawn of time, and I can't deny that I've suffered from them before...  But I still find it frustrating when people allow their emotions to blind them to the point that they can't submit to simple logic.  

(This is, of course, assuming that you are knowledgeable of everything that's relevant to the situation to make that logical conclusion--but for the purpose of this rant, let's just say that one does.)

Nowadays, I think there's a lot of emphasis on the self--and it's this sort of self-involved thinking that creates the narrow minded people you meet today.  It isn't quite the materialism of the 80's (though advertising and corporate domination is more pervasive than ever.)  What it is instead is just an idea of self-righteousness.  Lots of popular songs today circle around the idea that one is "right" even when one is "wrong."  Also, the increased usage of things like the computer and television has made vapidness a wide-spread epidemic.  While this hardly qualifies as proof, I have to say it's pretty disheartening when many of the kids I've spoken to in universities fail to practice basic critical thinking.  And I find it odd, as some of these individuals DO read alot and can ace through tough college courses...

But I guess the issue isn't that they lack "intelligence" so much as just "wisdom".

So I just wonder, how many of you stop to try and think of things from all angles?  Do you admit the things you did wrong despite how much it may hurt or embarass you?  Do you factor in where others are coming from?  I.e., a broken home, poor romantic relationships, money problems, social experience... Do you use your conclusions from such musings to try and reach out in a way that the other person would respond positively?  And do they?

This introspective post was brought to you by the makers of Anxiety™, "When confidence is away, insecurity will play!"

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