Something to Think About

What do our priorities and thoughts say about us?

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Something to Think About

photo by Anjana Suresh

photo by Anjana Suresh

photo by Anjana Suresh

Anjana Suresh, Copy Editor

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More often than not, we probably have dozens of things running through our head at one time. Some might manifest themselves as worries or complaints, others may be hopes, and the rest could purely be fleeting thoughts. Whatever those may be specifically, they all have some value to us or define us to a certain extent.

The dawn of the new school year brings some degree of change for all of us, and with that change, we’re forced to reevaluate our priorities. Juniors have their hearts set on driving to school the day after they get their license. Highly motivated seniors apply to dozens of schools to maximize their chances of getting into the best school they possibly can. 

However, our priorities are often influenced by where we live, or in this case, socioeconomic status. The running joke at NA about us being the rich kids is especially popular among teachers. Some of my favorites from years past were the description of a $100 bill as “loose change,” or a helicopter as “a staple among NA families.” Part of the reason for said popularity is that the things we should really be grateful for tend to fall on the wayside sometimes. I overheard someone’s complaint in the hallway the other day about not getting the car they wanted, even though they received a brand-new car.

The polarized political climate we’re all surrounded by means that most people would choose to hear about constant shortcomings of either the President or the Democratic Party rather than significant events affecting 96% of the human race.”

Priorities can vary from person to person; however, a lot can be said about what affects groups of people. My parents always voice their concern about the lack of world affairs being broadcast in our news nowadays, but the reason is simple. The polarized political climate we’re all surrounded by means that most people would choose to hear about constant shortcomings of either the President or the Democratic Party rather than significant events affecting 96% of the human race.

What about the thoughts we don’t vocalize? They’re obviously less important, but still relevant. We went over the definition of Freudian slip in AP Psychology a few days ago, and I thought it fits in well in this context. We say something we really didn’t mean to — a simple slip of the tongue — or could that word or phrase secretly more important to us than what we were actually trying to say?

Personally, I’m always thinking about something, to the point where I overthink or over-analyze something extremely simple. I can’t sit still if there isn’t something to think about. I have to have the perfect sentence spelled out in my head before my fingers can even touch the keyboard. Not because I’m a perfectionist — it’s simply important to me. 

I’m a numbers person; there’s always a subconscious effort to quantify all of my thoughts. I check the time. It’s 1:21. My thought process takes off from there. That means there are nine minutes until 1:30, 39 minutes until 2:00, and then ten hours until midnight. Ten hours is 600 minutes, which is about 15 times the time from 1:21 to 2:00. None of that means anything to me, but sharing it now says something about who I am.

Something that you think is the end-all-be-all can be extremely trivial for someone else, or vice versa. Regardless of what you devote your time and attention to, putting things into perspective is imperative. Doing so allows us to interact with and understand larger groups of people as we navigate the path of life.