Maybe it’s my generation (later millennials) or just the topics that are circling around on social media and the news lately, but all I seem to hear is “people are too sensitive now”.
At first, I agreed with the statement. It seems everyone has to complain about something that we never used too before. Or maybe that was just me making my life easier by agreeing with majority of my circle. But as of late, I’m started to rethink and also get, as some would say, a little too sensitive, over someone saying, “they are being too sensitive”.
It really bothers me when people go on rants about issues, they haven’t experienced for themselves, or even bothered to actually research the facts about. Instead they get their information from a random Facebook post. I know everyone is entitled to their opinion, but I think we should change this to everyone is entitled to their own researched, or experienced, opinion. But that is a discussion for another time.
I want take the ‘too sensitive’ topic from another angle. I’ve started this new practice with myself, where instead of getting worked up, I ask myself why I’m getting so worked up. Maybe this stems from my Health & Safety Investigation training of the 5 whys and trying to get down to the root cause, but either way it seems to be working for me, and the few people I’ve tried it on.
When either myself, or someone I know, starts ranting or becoming very bothered with a topic that was briefly discussed, and not actually researched or experienced, I ask myself or them, WHY they are so bothered by the topic? Have I, or they, actually experienced the topic we are complaining people are being too sensitive about? The answer, usually, no. So then why am I, or this person so worked up over it? The usual answer, once either I or the person I’m asking has run out of our preliminary, surface level research, “Well because it isn’t right!”.
When this line comes out, I used to stop and just accept defeat, but now I keep asking why. But what isn’t right about it? Do I, or you, have a legitimate reason to say, it isn’t right? Have I, or you, actually experienced this topic in person? What is actually causing these strong feelings towards this topic? WHY, WHY, WHY. I refuse to end a conversation with, it just isn’t right, however from what I’ve experienced, no one wants to carry the conversation (without yelling) past this point. So now what?
I say, self reflect. We can’t change the world if at first, we can’t try and change the way we see it. Yes, there are a lot of hot topics and issues floating around, but in my opinion, we need to really consider why these topics are either important to us or bothering us so much. I challenge you to really think, engage and ask yourself why, before getting mad or bothered about a ‘hot topic’. And instead of getting offended when someone asks you to validate your opinion, try actually explaining it to them. Take it from a point of self-reflection, instead of just saying “people are being too sensitive now”.