This Is Water: How Does It Teach Us To Change The Way We Think?

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The speech on This Is Water makes us think about thinking, something that we have most likely never thought of doing. Thinking comes naturally to us, and we do it instinctively, the way we think has been molded by our life experiences or lack of, as well as our upbringing and beliefs. We however have not learned how to think in the most effective way, this is not about our capacity to think, but about what we chose to think about, as stated by David Foster Wallace, this has nothing to do with our level of education, but with how we prioritize what is truly important to our lives.

Every decision we make is about ourselves, what our wants and needs are, what we are feeling that day as we are the center of our universe, as humans, we are naturally self-centered, we want to do what is what is right for us, meaning that at times we have very little consideration for what is happening to the person standing right next to us. In the speech, David Foster Wallace uses the tedious grocery shops that adults have to do as a representation of this. The simple thought of having to visit the nearest supermarket after an eight-hour workday is truly draining, and a task most people avoid. But is it really that bad? Or can you change your way of thinking making it a slightly more enjoyable part of your day? Whether you complain about having to do a task or not you still have to do it, so change your state of mind and it may just improve how you feel. Take the people around you into consideration they are most probably in a worse situation than you.

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We are naturally like this because of our default setting, we are wired to think of ourselves before anyone else. Everything we feel is immediate to us unlike what other people feel, this makes us unintentionally self-centered. We have to choose to alter this change how we see things, look at every situation through someone else’s lens, and take in what is happening around us. It’s also important to come to terms that not everyone sees things in the same way, one situation to you may have a completely different meaning to someone else.

It’s not easy to change the way we think, this will take a lot of work, we have to completely restructure our minds and focus on something that isn’t ourselves. If this is achieved it will give us a much bigger understanding of what other people around us are going through, it will make you more compassionate and grow as a person.

In conclusion, I think it’s very important to prioritize what we think about, we need to take more time worrying about what truly affect us rather than the small insignificant challenges that we face in our day to day lives such as waiting in queue to pay, if we learn to think in my opinion we will live a much healthier life and will be far more grateful than we currently are. Learning to think will make you feel more alive than you ever have.


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