Our different perspectives are something that makes us humans superior to other mammals. We have evolved to the point where we have structured our brains in a way that allows us to branch off from our natural instincts. Unlike our ancestors, our view of life no longer consists of just survival and reproduction. Our personal experiences are what craft our perspective on life. But how much can we really grow as people if we are only able to see things one way? There are billions of people in this world each with their own way of living life. What would happen if all these people could talk among each other and share their beliefs? Not only would thoughts be combined to form new ideas, but it would also help our society advance. New concepts would be popularized that would challenge and possibly change our current societal expectations.
I have my own perspective in life but I can’t say it’s the same perspective I had years or even months ago. The reality is that my views are always changing, but that is how I have grown to become who I am today. Talking and listening to others taught me things that I could have never thought of myself, but yet I love.
I have decided to go around asking other students at Green Hope their perspective on life not only for my own personal journey, but also to encourage my readers to let themselves learn from diverse views. The following quotes are from current Seniors at Green Hope High School (including myself) and their opinions on life.
Karen Jean, Senior
“Our life and our actions do not need to make sense to anyone else other than ourselves. Society is gaslighting everyone. It is psychologically targeting us to question or try to change who we are as people. It does this with the societal expectations and norms that it created for people to feel pressured to follow. We let ourselves fall into this trap because we care so much. People care too much about what others think, but people also care too much to judge others on who they are or what they do. We should only be trying to focus on ourselves and achieving happiness, which really is the only point to life. I think that should be the common goal for everyone and how you get there shouldn’t matter. We only live once so if we are constantly trying to not be who we are or do what we like then we are not really living. There are billions of people in the world so in the end there are going to be people that like you but also don’t like you no matter who you are or what you do. You just need to embrace that and focus on finding and interacting with those you do vibe with, and ignore those you don’t. I think one of the most influential things that people should focus more on are our thoughts. Our thoughts control our emotions, our emotions control our actions, our actions define who we are. I am a big believer in brain plasticity. Our actions and thoughts can physically change our brain structure by modifying our neural networks and wirings. There is a specific neural pattern that occurs when we have positive thoughts that allows us to be in a state of happiness (same thing with negative thoughts). Therefore, the more we focus on having positive thoughts the more we are allowing our brain to create the pattern that puts us in a happy state of mind. Reason for why it is extremely important to put effort into avoiding negative thoughts and prevent those patterns from forming. In the end, all people need is to focus on their consciousness and finding their inner peace however that is. That mentality is all we need to achieve true freedom.”
Nicolas Ekezue, Senior
“Limits are self imposed, most things don’t matter. What’s important is learning, enjoying life and spreading love. I have realized I am built differently. The truth about people is that on a daily basis they have a limited amount of quality energy they can put into things. That’s why when people are like 8hrs a day they would be pooped way before the days even finish. Personally I believe humans have around 3-4 hours of quality focus and energy before they lose focus and information retention. What matters is energy allocation. The basic lesson of energy allocation is to maximize your limited amount of quality energy on important things. When you run out and can’t focus anymore you can just do other stuff that doesn’t require it. I got really into spirituality, self awareness and meditation like early quarantine and A LOT has changed ever since. Personally I believe societal norms are stupid in fact I don’t really think I can name any cause I never thoughts out them. To me success=freedom. There are many factors to it like location, money, time (the most important one) and other stuff but if you can do whatever, whenever you want with whoever you want and not have to answer to anyone that’s basically success for me.”
Nick Polsinelli, Senior
“I used to believe that life has no innate meaning and we are all bound to death; this led me to a path of indifference regarding my friends and family and resulted in self-destructive tendencies. I believed that everyone in the world is in a constant battle to take advantage of each other, and helping others was pointless because I saw no emotional or physical benefit to it. However, after a series of unfortunate events stemming from this particular philosophy, I learned that this is an incorrect mindset to have in life. By helping others, doing what you want to do in life, and meeting a wide variety of people, life becomes so rich and exposes you to new viewpoints and information that mold your own pre-existing views. This was when I adopted several different unique facets that completely changed my life: number one, walking barefoot as opposed to wearing shoes. Being barefoot, including during school and on my daily five-to-ten mile runs, has not only provided me with a sense of freedom and control in life, but has greatly strengthened by endurance, coordination and foot control. Number two, eating healthy and only drinking water. By cutting out any greasy, fried, or high-fat foods from my diet, I have felt better than ever and have seen the improved progress of lifting weights, and my morning runs never sometimes feel terrible due to stomach pains from food the night before. Drinking water is important; by cutting out sugary drinks, you are only rewarding your body. Number three: be yourself and don’t conform your personality to others. This is the most important facet of living better that has changed my life: in five years, you will most likely not even remember most of the people that are in your life right now, so there is no point in changing your personality for others. Speak up in class, ask out the person you think is cute, pick up the hobby you wanted, learn a new skill. That is what life is all about, and by following my personal philosophies you can live a more vibrant life. Success varies for everyone but success for me is living a fulfilling life, which means beginning a publishing company, a film company, and my ultimate goal is to create my own country without government censorship. Society and social norms are trivial, however some norms are in place for a reason.”
Mia Ameen, Senior
“I think nowadays, especially with social media, it’s become easier to distance ourselves from reality and become entrenched with the ‘perfect’ lives of other people online and then apply the same unrealistic standards to ourselves. I think we romanticize what our lives should be like way too much, so much that most people I know including myself struggle with self esteem and insecurities because we’re all conditioned to be unsatisfied with our own lives and constantly want more. We are all deluded and we all yearn for perfection but we never learn how to cope with our own shortcomings. Life feels so unreal sometimes because it’s so easy to become disillusioned by an idealized version of what life ‘could be’. It’s like everyone is constantly chasing more ‘better’ things in life, no matter how ‘good’ life gets. We never really stop and appreciate what we have, we just keep wanting more, and this is just an irreversible effect of capitalism and industrialization. Capitalism has conditioned humans to crave instant, addictive gratification- a simple analogy would be mcdonalds, how we can pay a low price and quickly be satisfied by a shittily produced burger. We still crave more in the end, even though a time-consuming homemade meal made and shared with others would have made us happier in the end. This is a bad analogy but basically we think all the wrong things are gonna make us happy.”
Noel Gracia, Senior
“I’m a Non-denominational Christian I see myself as special. We all had a 1-400 trillion chance of being who we were, so that fact we were conceived means we’re all special. I believe every human is unique, but you choose whether to be a follower or different. Family, friends, personal relationships, and how you positively impact humans matters most, and all the disagreements and violence is nonsense. Success to me is maintaining your happiness without an independent basis. If you’re able to support yourself while being happy, not money or things, defines your success. I don’t agree with some societal norms because it puts some men and women from doing things they love, but I also recognize gender roles are predicated on natural biology.”
Kira Walsh, Senior
“I think the most important and basically only thing that makes life important is finding happiness not just in your career or what you wanna do but finding happiness in everything that you do. I think I see myself as like the main freaking character and my surroundings are just props that will affect my decisions based on what I do. I think true success is just being happy because at the end of the day we are all gonna die and that’s the only constant we have in life. If you do things for money or for others happiness it won’t bring you true joy. I obviously think the point of life is to bring your happiness and translate it over to others so the world can be a better place. At the end of the day the point of life to me atleast is just to go to heaven and like make decisions that reflect and set me up for that goal. Society is honestly so confusing even to me. I don’t get it because it’s just made up of social constructs but who the heck ever made them. Society judges people too much but then people who say that are also contributing to the negative judgement as they do the same. The concept of society it just dumb people should just do whatever makes them happy. That can be moving to LA or going to freaking Harvard or just traveling and not doing anything, who cares!”
Macie Ritter, Senior
“Everything happens for a reason. This can sound harsh to people because some MESSED UP stuff can happen, but out of it comes different things some positives too. I hate societal norms but I end up following a lot of them anyways. Contrary to that, there’s a lot of them that I’m sure that I break without noticing. I hate that men can’t be vulnerable tho. I HATE the societal norm that you’re supposed to go to college and then have your whole life planned out at 22 heck no. Take your time you don’t have to know everything so quickly! I like that a lot of people are breaking these norms down more and more and being who they want to be and doing what they want to do because it makes it easier on the newer generations to come! Success should be when YOU feel like you’ve succeeded and other peoples opinions on your success shouldn’t matter. There are always little successes along the way that must be noticed and praised and don’t let setbacks diminish your success. The road to success is never easy. People will doubt you and there will be setbacks but it’s all about what you learn on the way. Superficiality is so common and hard to avoid and I think that a lot of people are superficial not on purpose it’s just embedded into them. I feel like with superficiality some people are that way because they just don’t see what is important in life. It’s not about the fact that you rode in a jeep, it’s where you went and what you saw along the way if that makes sense. Social media is very superficial and makes it easy for people to be that way.”