The definition for the word, opinion, according to my dictionary of choice reads as follows: 1. Considering a belief or judgment that rests on grounds insufficient to produce complete certainty. 2. Entirely probable: Or, a personal view, attitude, or appraisal.
Read and Pronounced in the following languages as:
Spanish: pienso que, (to my mind…)
The word in French: “à mon avis” (in my opinion…)
Opinions. What is it about this word that weighs so heavy on us as human beings? It seems that anyone and everyone has one, about every subject; even when they may or may not have any knowledge or authority on a particular topic that they project an opinion about.
I think some of my favorite opinions I have received in person have been about my career.
When I respond to the question, “What do you do for a living?”
I politely share, “I am an elementary educator. I teach multiple subjects at the fourth grade level.”
A few opinionated responses can be rounded up into one nice, clean, fresh labeled response: That’s cute.
Here’s my thoughtfully contained responsive dialogue that runs through my head: It’s cute that I teach classroom aged children for a living? Ok wait, are the students cute? Are you referring or meaning that I am cute? Or is what I do with my masters degree….cute? I’d just like to clarify what all that really means.
Here are my thoughtful reflections in no particular order:
I am an adult. I am not cute. I am many things, included but not limited to: intelligent, thoughtful, caring, qualified, creative, attractive, humorous, and talented. I’m not cute.
Children circa age nine to ten years of age have cute moments in time which can correlate to the equivalent of, “cuteness,” in a what our society deems appropriate. Again with the opinions though…? However, please do not diminish the fact that children are highly outspoken, clever, and quick witted human beings all at the same time as being, cute.
Is a higher education degree cute? Is spending 365 days pursuing a masters degree in a field of work reduced to the equivalent of being cute? Is being paid $40-$50,000 less than other masters of their field in our society really cute? Is this where the issue in value of education really lies? It all boils down to the fact that people think it is…gulp…cute to educate?
Why is it that we have opinions about things that perhaps we have never, ever experienced? To quote Harper Lee’s wonderful novel and character Atticus Finch, “You never really understand a person until you consider things from his point of view. Until you climb into his skin and walk around in it.” These words struck a chord with me at age fifteen and they still do today. They are so much more applicable to what I am referring to now at age thirty one than what they were when I first read them in school.
Why is it that we all seem to have an opinion about what other people do with their lives, their relationships, their beliefs, and their families? Who am I to comment on what someone else does with their time, let alone, their body? It absolutely astounds me that in our society we are still going round and around the mulberry bush regarding so many topics. This feels like an age old argument. This phrase just came to mind, “Only time will tell,” this seems rather odd. Are we not at the point when, “TIME SHOULD TELL,” already?
My little experiences with responses to my line of work, which mind you are merely one facet of who I am as an individual, are very minuscule in the grand scheme of things. There are a thousand and one little pieces that make up my daily thoughts and choices in life. I feel so lucky to be granted this life in which I have choices and options. Although, that should be saved as an entirely different rantingly thoughtful blog. Honestly though, I think the moral of my thoughts here today friends is this: think before you speak.
Think and consider the following:
Is what I am about to say nice?
Is it thoughtful, is it something that I am sharing in order to inspire, create, or empower?
Is this the right audience to share this comment with? Or is it meant for another purpose?
Does this opinion of mine really demonstrate the value of the words I am about to speak? If not, perhaps I should rethink my statement before it flies out of my mouth.
In my humble opinion life is about uplifting others up, showing and caring enough to give respect and above all empower each other to be our best selves on this earth.
I have been actively working on opening my eyes, seeking out truths, and sharing my wisdom. Spring is a wonderful opportunity to turn over a new leaf, no pun intended.
Sparkle on friends.