Introspection: Its Importance Within Chaos

Life is all about perspective. When life is put into perspective, difficult times, such as living through a pandemic, can either bring out the best and worst in people. It has been about one month living through quarantine– with this being said, many have had the time to be confronted by their own thoughts. Isolation and social distancing have continuously proven to be useful in order to flatten the curve. However, there is one undeniable truth: We are social creatures. How can individuals make use of these moments of uncertainty and find comfort? The answer is introspection. 

What does it mean to introspect? According to Meriam Webster, introspection is defined as “a reflective looking inward: an examination of one’s own thoughts and feelings.” This act is extremely important in order to get to know oneself better. Now, with unlimited time, it is the perfect time to reflect. Think of what patterns cause you to feel certain ways and challenge yourself to get to know why you are the way that you are. Unfortunately, not many are able to make time to think because of the many distractions.

Distractions help to an extent as it is a fun pass time. Endlessly binging on TikTok, Instagram, Snapchat, or Netflix can seem to keep you entertained for a while. It’s relatable and seems to successfully fill up the hours of the day that you desperately want to be over. However, all these distractions replace what a normal daily routine entails and can create toxic habits if you aren’t careful. You see, there’s a difference between passing through life and actually living your life. What makes you feel alive the most? Becoming aware of your own thoughts and emotions will answer this question.

It is easy to let your day-to-day become a routine; it is also your choice to decide whether it’ll be good or bad. Even before quarantine, you’d wake up, go through the school day, scroll through social media, and go to sleep on an endless loop. It’s almost as if you were on autopilot. In a way, perhaps it is easier to live life in such a way and you don’t realize that you need a break until you reflect on yourself. When sitting in a room the whole day (maybe alternating between the living room, kitchen, porch) things are put into perspective. While reflecting for long periods of time may be confused with overthinking, it’s more so a way of finally paying attention. It is a chance, a rare one at that, to take a break and observe your life.

A great example of someone utilizing their isolation in order to create something great is Isaac Newton during the Great London Plague of 1665 in which he did not leave his home until two years after. During this time, he theorized about gravity by simply observing his garden. In modern times, there are plenty of concepts to be discovered, but it all starts with curiosity. What is stopping you from trying something new or even something you never had the chance to try until now?

Some people would rather allow themselves to be distracted. Knowingly avoiding and falling into habits due to comfort or fear can manifest into further unconsciousness. This is a time in history to change this generational pattern. For all we know, our “normal” will never be the same. Society, culture, the economy, and connection, in general, are all in the midst of a great change. This change is can be seen as a gift; it is the chance for every individual to figure themselves out. The only way the world can heal, improve, and change for the better is when everyone plays their role. How would someone be aware of this role if he/she never looked within him/herself to figure it out?