There have been several topics in the news lately about young teenagers and their attempts to make changes in the world. From gun control to freedom of speech these youngsters are determined to make their voices heard. It’s an act worth applause and recognizing our children are the next generation of voices is a wonderful concept to embrace.
Did you ever notice that when we see beauty there are many layers to it? Growing up I used to watch on PBS an artist who managed to make the most amazing landscapes with what he described in the most seemingly simple form. But with each color - layer - he added, the picture became more and more amazing.
In anything we see beauty there are layers... clothing has layers of accessories; food has layers of herbs and spices; rooms have layers of rugs and art... the list is endless! Even what we consider "simple" would have layers to add depth and beauty.
Lately, it seems the news is plagued with so many sad and negative stories that show the amount of pain around us. School shootings, celebrity suicides, hate motivated crimes... We, as a people, are hurting. And it seems more and more we don’t have outlets to express our pain. As it gets easier to not interact with each other, there is a stronger sense of isolation: we have online “friends”, we order our groceries online, we stare at a computer vs working in person…. Society is encouraging us in the loudest of terms to isolate ourselves. But to what end?
At our core, human beings wish to connect. We are made to connect. And not connecting is when our frustration of not having an outlet becomes louder. People – and connection – is vital to the human experience. When hearing about school shooters, celebrity suicides, social media “battles”, etc. the eventual answer is a person’s lack of connection to someone else.
In high school I was very active in the English Department. I wrote for the school newspaper, was involved in the yearbook, and was part of a special group that were focused on journalism as a college track. As I enrolled in college I found that journalism and English seemed to call me and my first year was spent enrolled in these programs. It wasn't until my first Introduction to Psychology class that I realized the value of mental wellness and eventually changed my academic journey to focus on the science of the mind.
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