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October 12, 2014 | by  | in Features |
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Why we should be more open-minded about people

How many people have you said hello to today? Not many, right? That’s because we are the most closed-off generation that has come along. Apart from the total fleeting of our social skills and access to more information about everything ever, we are just a bunch of judgy arseholes.

I say “judgy” because damn, we require a lot to deem someone worthy of our attention. They have to fit the criteria we have in our head that deems them interesting enough to approach, talk to, like. What is this criteria, you ask? It is the idea that we have gotten into our minds, through a multitude of resources e.g. the damn interweb, which forms a picture of the people we would ideally surround ourselves with. Sounds complicated, but you and I both do it every single day.

How? I bet someone walked past you this week and you thought to yourself “Got a hairbrush?” or “Ugly shoes” or “I see an Art History book: we will not get along”, or something along those lines. Nevertheless, we are a bunch of judgy bitches. Expecting certain things based on what we see and the little we know – because, let’s be honest, it is little, in the big scheme of things – and not really truly knowing what we will actually get.

For some reason that really escapes me, people think that putting other people in these files in their head, largely based on where they come from, would help them make an accurate judgment about them. I always thought that it was about how someone was brought up or what kind of books they read or music they like to listen to. Not where they come from. I’m from a Pacific Island, and naturally, people tell me my English is outstanding, even though it’s the only language I know. Now that’s judgy. Read more. Or at least watch more movies.

But you, my fellow judgers, are not all to blame.  What you read, what you watch, what your parents and friends tell you… It all influences the way you think. And yes, this may be going a little deeper into things, but this is actually the source of our personalities, our character almost, and what we endeavour and seek to endeavour when we decide to think for ourselves adds on to what we have learnt.

And following on from that, what we know dictates what we do and what we want to do. You like what you like because you have made your mind up to like that. And it could be everything or it could be one thing. But that is how you see yourself down your well-written path in your own extraordinary mind. Or so you think.

Can you imagine the number of missed opportunities at friendships or a relationship or amazing sex or a business venture that have walked on by just because you have turned your head in the other direction, doing this because you were approached by the universe with an unfamiliar situation or with an unfamiliar person to your sense of normality? That’s a lot of sex you could’ve had. Or a lot of conversations that could’ve enlightened you on the many things you didn’t know about. Shocking, right, realising you didn’t know it all after all?

And with every new person I meet, good or bad, liked or detested, I learned something about me and the world every time. Every single time. Being it the way they talk or what they talk about or how they like their coffee in the morning or how much they are willing to spend on shoes… it all matters. In the big scheme of things, it may not. But in your marvellous screwed-up mind, it will. Think of it how you will, but your mind has the ability to take pointless information and use it ten years from now so intelligently and unconsciously that it may astound you what formulates. Because great ideas and opinions and ways of life are never a single subject taught to you at university: it is the collections of tiny things that accumulate over a range of totally irrelevant wavelengths and people and places.

So open up, judgy folk, for your next big adventure, idea or one-night stand could be behind you in line at the café, and you will not be the dick this time that does not strike up conversation because you are so damn interesting on your own.  A simple “Hello” or “Your arse is spectacular”, and watch the walls of your fully shaded mind open up to whatever it is that comes. Or, put simply: don’t pussy out.

And maybe that’s the curse, thinking we know it all.

Tia is a second-year international student; her most important qualities are being able to channel Beyoncé and drink Sav like it’s water.

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