The world is an interesting place, filled with a diverse range of people, cultures, and experiences. When I go for my walks in the woods, I often find myself having internal dialogues or pondering thoughts such as: why do people get upset over unimportant things while important things are happening they should probably be outraged over?
It seems to be all too common in today’s society that people get upset over little things like traffic jams, a missing sock, a long line at the grocery store, or whose face is on a beer can, but when it comes to more significant issues like climate change, poverty, or social inequality, there is a relative indifference.
Why is that?
One possible explanation is that there is a limited amount of emotional energy. It’s easier to get worked up over something that directly affects you, like a bad haircut or a rude comment from a coworker, because it’s within our control. You can do something about it, like complain to the hairdresser or confront the coworker. However, when it comes to larger issues like global warming, poverty, or social inequality, you often feel powerless to effect change. It’s overwhelming, and so it leaves you feeling helpless and indifferent.
Another possible thought is that there has been a desensitization that happened to the world’s problems. With constant exposure to news and social media, there’s a sort of numbness to issues that should rightfully fuel the outrage. Again people are upset about companies supporting inclusivity but are not upset about the expelling representatives exercising their 1st amendment right, or is it that it’s okay for you but not them type scenario?
I think it’s time to recognize the difference between what is truly important and what is not. Learning to prioritize that emotional energy and channel it into things that matter. It’s not about ignoring the small things entirely, but rather recognizing that they should not take up an excessive amount of our attention and energy.
And yeah it took me a long time to learn that a basket full of laundry or the dishes not getting done is not the end of the world.
I also think it’s important to stop being indifferent to larger issues and start staying informed and be willing to take action, even if it’s just in small ways. Whether it’s donating to a charity, volunteering, or simply having conversations with others, we can all do something to make a difference. This last one may be tricky pending on what side your family and friends hang around.
So the next time you find yourself getting upset over something trivial, take a step back and ask yourself if it’s really worth your energy. Instead, consider channeling that energy into something more significant, something that will have a more significant impact on the world. And a walk in the woods may just help you get that sorted.