Contrary to the popular saying, great minds certainly don’t think alike. In fact, one of the defining characteristics of a great mind is that it thinks more creatively and critically, processing information in new ways.
The greatest minds fill patent offices with their wildly different and entirely novel concepts, developing innovations, technology and societal advancements because they don’t think in the same ways.
As we consider what we wish to gain from these moments, weeks and months of the upcoming year, we also must consider what our minds will gain and how they will transform to become something greater than what they were before.
However, it definitely is difficult to think in ways no one else has. Not all of us are destined to create patents because it is challenging to imagine something new when it feels as if everything has already been dreamed of. It is difficult to write down the same goals every month or year and feel as if they will never be reached.
Life is a cycle of difficulty, but it is also a cycle of difference.
Every day, something occurs differently. Our goals do not occur as we imagine or our morning is interrupted by something that changes our course of normalcy, and it is happening all the time.
Thinking differently is one of the only ways we can possibly adapt to the world because we will challenge ourselves to think about our perspective or situation in a different way than what we may have imagined before. Endlessly refining and defining my mindset has encouraged me in so many ways, but this hasn’t always meant toughening my mind but molding it to the situation.
As I approach the last semester of my senior year, I know that my mind should be adjusted for a state of closure but also set in a state of peace. I accomplished what I could and did my best in every situation, so finishing the year with an appreciation for all that has happened and looking forward to what will happen is the mindset I need to place myself in. However, in a few months, the mindset may need to change and I may have to adjust to a more intense situation that requires further energy, so deducing how we respond to life and adjusting to it transcends commonality into difference and greatness.
Our minds are created to be constantly changing and adjusting, so we must take a moment and consider where we are in life and what we need to be focusing on. If we do not take this simple step, we may miss the goodness of waiting and the excitement of action because we are not changing with the situation.
Although we may wish it were true, circumstances do not always mold our minds. Sometimes, we are resistant to change or the situation, so our minds feel frozen in place. We must always be actively adapting and thinking differently about how to respond to what the world has given us — the mark of a great mind.
One of the many reasons our life is so important is because it is about making our time here something we are proud of. We hope we existed not correctly but truly. This begins with placing our mind in a state of existence where we know that the world will move around us in unexpected ways, but we still control where we wish to be mentally and emotionally because we know that our mind is great as it is — great because it is different, always changing, and never the same.
No, great minds have never thought alike.
Emelia Richling is a senior at Northwest High School.