Friday, November 8, 2013

perspective.

I think one of the most important lessons I have learned so far from high school is how to have perspective.
Which is sort of weird because what made me learn this lesson is observing people who didn't have much of it.

I think it is so easy (especially as a teenager and a high schooler) to be completely wrapped up in our own lives. And our own problems that we've got going on and our own victories and our own mistakes and our own regrets and our own assignments and our own personal issues and our own this and our own that.
And what I realized is that we sort of have this expectation that everyone should care.

I know for me, if there's something going wrong in my life, the first thing I want to do is go up to someone and start complaining. 
And that's all fine and dandy and everything, but I think I don't realize enough that everyone else has problems too.

It's really not all about me all the time. (Unfortunately)

People have their own things going on, and I'm working on becoming more aware of that. I'm trying to ask more questions about people's lives and getting to know them more.
This strategy has been working very well, because I found that people really like it when someone genuinely listens.

Because you know those people that you try and talk to, and somehow every conversation ends up being about themselves?
Don't be that person.
Ask questions and actually care about the answer. People will like you more and you'll get to know people better and you'll be a better human because of it. Promise.

Also, I've realized that things that seem like earth-shattering, hysteria-inducing, tear-triggering problems to me really aren't that important.
In the grand scheme of things, in the bigger picture, small little mundane issues don't matter. Drama is a prime example of this.

Because when you think about it, I am one of seven billion (Seven billion!!) people on this Earth.
And Earth is one of eight planets revolving around the Sun.
And the Sun is one of the 300 billion stars in the Milky Way Galaxy alone.
And there is a massive undetermined amount of galaxies in the Universe.

I am literally, less than a speck in this Universe.
I'm basically this small little organism made of carbon existing for an incredibly small amount of time. And I don't get another shot.

However, thinking about the pointlessness of it all and how small we really are can take you down a very dark path of existential crises and sitting and agonizing over the meaning of life.
Here's what I think about it.

I was reading Sirens of Titan by Vonnegut, and this is a quote I really really liked:

“A purpose of human life, no matter who is controlling it, is to love whoever is around to be loved.” 

And I agree with that.

For me personally, I have accepted that in the grand scheme of things, I am not any more significant than any other human being.
But what I want to do is to take the one life I've got and make the most out of it.
I want to learn as much as I can about the world around me. I want to understand how things work and why things work and why the world is the way it is.
I want to absorb as much knowledge as I can.
And I want to affect as many lives as I possibly and maybe even leave behind my name in a history book or a science textbook or even be immortalized in a Wikipedia page.
I want to make use of my capacity and potential for change and for making the world a little (almost insignificantly) better than I found it. 


(Just some things on my mind lately, sorry if it doesn't make any sense)