Exam season has finally ended so that means ridding the heat from exam fever and welcoming the summer holiday heat! For all those new here, welcome to the series! The aim of this series is to promote thinking beyond the boundaries of a ‘box’ or transforming the quote, ‘thinking out of the box’ to ‘thinking limitlessly’. We mustn’t let a ‘box’ impact the vastness of our thinking space as our thoughts widely influence our personality and confidence. For doing so, we must understand the true meaning of a ‘box’ while comprehending the necessity and ways to eradicate one. The ‘box’ in this series is an abstract concept. Despite its imaginary nature, it impacts our lives strongly as we are all born with one. This box encompasses our thinking, and the sides represent our emotional boundaries. Each person is different and could have a different material to their box. Some boxes break on their own, while some need to be peeled off gently from the inside.
If you are impulsive, outgoing and bold, your box is probably made of ice as it melts in presence of the surrounding environment. Yes, sometimes they freeze, but only when placed in extremely cold conditions where melting can be a difficult task. It is hard to break them physically from the outside, so the only option to open them is to leave them in the surroundings to melt. In other words, a person inside an ice box reacts when circumstances unfold so no preparation is needed. If you’re shy, the box surrounding you is probably made from a plastic film, bound together tightly. Unlike ice, this can’t melt in surroundings, but can be opened by an external force; but not in the way it wished to. This has both a positive and negative side to it; some like being called on in a situation, while some don’t. If you’re like me (who doesn’t like being called on), it is best to open your box from the inside and slowly before a sticky situation arises.
Back in the day, being a shy kid myself, I often questioned my own actions. Fear of opinion and expectations from others often prevented me from doing something new. In other words, I was inside a plastic film box and hesitated to step out of it. I feared someone breaking my box. In the past few years, I’ve learnt, there is something special about us, shy people. Some of us are perfectionists but we fail to admit so due to fear of going wrong somewhere. We’ve got talent, but we shy ourselves from opportunities. Everyone has a shy side to themselves, but the ‘shy squad’ has more, building the ‘plastic film box’ boundaries stronger around them. Well, if you don’t like anyone calling on you, it’s best to break the boundaries and in turn, slowly break the box. Slowly, no, haste. Breaking the box suddenly can have its own side effects; an unexpected situation can land you in a fix if you are not used to instantaneous thinking!
Peeling a plastic film box can be easy, but you need to know when to start or initiate the change. For me, the start of university was a game changer. I had decided to initiate a tiny change in myself when starting university. I peeled the first layer by introducing myself to people during freshers. If you don’t know where to start, this is the best thing you can do. Start the conversation, for a few minutes, forget that you were ever shy in the past. Trust me, it works! In no time you would be establishing contacts and realise you were never shy! You don’t have to be a fresher to do this; you could make a fresh start today, tomorrow or the next semester, whenever you feel, ‘Yes! I need a tiny change in myself!’.
There is nothing wrong in being inside either of the boxes but creating a positive change outside them is highly commendable. Each of the above boxes mentioned above has something unique in them. The box made of ice exposes itself in circumstances, while the plastic film box observes silently and takes notes. A person inside the ice box can make errors in certain situations by assuming things quickly, for the translucent nature of ice. They have an idea of what’s going outside but cannot tell with certainty. On the other hand, a person inside the plastic film box can see everything clearly (transparency of plastic film) but avoids stepping out unless called on. In such a case, peeling the box layer by layer is highly recommended and I will talk about more layers in the next article.
OH YES! WHATEVER YOU DO, DON’T TRAP YOURSELVES INSIDE A CARDBOARD BOX!!!! If you do, step out immediately. Cardboard is opaque, unlike ice and plastic film. This is a box built by choice, no one is born with one. A cardboard box encloses any other box and stops the flow of ideas in and out. A person inside a cardboard box refuses to look outside into the world and is content in his/her own tiny space or ‘claustro-passionate’. This can be risky as one is oblivious to the possible changes in the surrounding.
Well, in a nutshell, transition is always welcome for a good purpose. So, come out of your shell, kids (or ‘box’ I should say)! Remember, THE MORE YOU PEEL, THE MORE YOU SEE! Now peel the first layer and go make some new friends!