“Your brain must be a very intense place.” The first time I read these words, I couldn’t help but relate to them so much. I have thoughts running in my head practically all day long. I might be doing something and a thought just pops into my head that there is something better I ought to be doing. It will be a full ten minutes before I can catch another train of thought. People sometimes refer to it as ‘overthinking’. I used to give it a similar name, but now I’m not so sure. Isn’t thinking an intricate part of being a human being?
I think it’s a way for us to sugarcoat things. Instead of acknowledging that we are worriers, we give it a less worrying name. Overthinking vs worrying. The latter is construed to be a negative emotion and no one wants to associate with it. Overthinking, on the other hand, is something we can even tout to our friends and no one will think any less of us. We water things down because in doing so, we presume it will make the thing less real; less tangible. It’s classic human behavior. But then again, who can say they have the right to generalize every person’s way of life into one flimsy adjective?
So I’ll be the first to admit that I am a worrier. I worry all the time. I worry about life after college. I worry about death; mine and my loved ones. I worry that something catastrophic is about to happen, every minute of every day. I worry about dying young with “unfulfilled dreams”. I worry that people don’t like me, or that I come off as snobbish. I worry about religion and all theories that surround it. I worry about the political climate of my country and how it will affect me in the future. My brain is in a constant frenzy.
You might at this point be thinking, “You have a choice not to worry about those things!” Well, I don’t, actually. It’s easy to think that we can switch our thoughts on and off at will; that we are the painters and the authors in our story. But are we really? If nature teaches us anything, it’s that we are the canvas. We do things because they have always been done that way. We assimilate to other people’s thoughts and try to convince ourselves that we had the same thoughts in the first place.
It’s just as easy to identify with the ‘rebel’ culture and talk ourselves into believing that we are ‘different than the rest of them’. All we hear is how we should aspire to be different; how this person or that person was a different kettle of fish and how it led to their success. But, what does it mean to be different? Why do we have to be different? Why can’t we be the kindred souls that we are without the hyper-competition and the tacky headlines that read, “5 Steps To Getting Ahead of The Competition”?
Why is everything always about being the best? Something that I am slowly learning to do is to romanticize my life. Every little thing. I smell my morning cup of coffee and it just gets my heart beating a little faster. I sit down to read a book and I just can’t help but feel so in love with life. And it’s the most liberating thing anyone can do.