Writing

There’s A Little Bit Of Everything In Life: A Philosophy

No matter what kind of mood you’re in, there’s one saying that seems to perfectly encapsulate what you’re feeling at that particular moment. These sayings serve as examples of universal truths that we can all relate to. For example, there’s a little bit of everything in life, and it all depends on how you want to view it: the glass half full or half empty; the light at the end of the tunnel or just another train passing by; and so on, and so forth.

There’s a little truth behind every “Just Kidding”. It’s easy to write off everything we do as just kidding. If you ask someone why they did something, they’re likely to reply “just kidding.” In reality, there is truth behind every joke and doing something just as a joke doesn’t make it any less real for us. However, when we take a step back and look at jokes, both spoken and practical, through a psychological lens, we can see how three elements (knowledge, emotion, and psychology) play into every action. The next time you find yourself saying just kidding, stop and consider what’s really going on.

For example, maybe we say that thing about our ex because it makes us feel better about ourselves; in actuality, there was more truth behind that comment than we let on. This can apply not only to humor, but also to situations where people hurt others or themselves and then blame it on a joke or an impulse. We often see things done in jest as completely separate from life and not connected to who we are as people.

There’s a little knowledge behind every “I don’t know”. People often express their ignorance with phrases like “I don’t know,” or “I’m not sure.” But, behind every I don’t know is a little bit of knowledge. It’s impossible to say something for certain without having at least some information about it. If you want to be taken seriously, then saying “I don’t know” when you really do know something is unacceptable. You may still express your ignorance if you cannot find an accurate answer; just make sure that you have done enough research and truly speaking from a place of uncertainty instead of being unsure because you haven’t bothered to try and find out.

Never claim to be ignorant of things you could reasonably learn more about, especially if your peers will call you on it. Friends and family members may let these slips slide, but people outside your personal circles will hold you accountable for them. Don’t pretend to know more or less than what you actually do. Instead, spend time educating yourself whenever possible so that other people can trust in what you say. The only way to develop true expertise is by putting in effort over time.

There’s a little emotion behind every “I don’t care”. There are some things that we don’t want to admit to ourselves or others. The first step is recognizing these emotions and deciding what you’re going to do about them, because trying to ignore your feelings is one of the worst things you can do. If you find yourself saying I don’t care, but feel very passionately about something, it might be time for some introspection. There are also more general problems that people needlessly create for themselves by ignoring their own feelings.

Everyone deals with feelings that they wish they didn’t have at some point. These feelings may seem overwhelming, but understanding them and processing them is actually one of the best things you can do for yourself. What seems like an emotionless state to others might just be your brain refusing to deal with something for now, but it won’t go away on its own. In fact, if you ignore these emotions, not only will they cause frustration and poor decisions down the line, but you’ll also needlessly hurt other people in your life.

Sure enough, there are times when we don’t feel like doing anything or interacting with anyone for reasons we may not even understand ourselves and sure enough sometimes people create problems out of their own inability to simply process emotions on their own. It is better to be mindful of our own shortcomings than to simply ignore them.

Colophon
This article was inspired by reading through my writing notebook, and writing about common verbal shortcuts in popular parlance.
The image featured here is titled Thought, and was taken in August 2015 at the Madison-Bouckville Antique Show.

Asides
On The Philosophy Of Loving And Losing | Philosophy And Modern Life: Prometheus | The Body According To Plato: Desires | The Education Of Max Bickford | Mindfulness And Evolutionary Psychology: A Primer

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