I have an immense interest in the lives of other people. This is probably a common phenomenon, but many people focus on the high points and most exciting portions of others’ lives.
Meanwhile, nothing intrigues me more than the minutiae. For example, one of my favorite books as a middle schooler (which I don’t remember the name of because I thought it was objectively lame considering the subject matter) was a tale of some teenagers just living their life over the course of a year or so, with an extremely minimal plot. The novel focused on the characters’ lives and their interactions, which seemed so much more real than stories of crazy adventures. Another example is my choice of favorite Harry Potter book, the Order of the Phoenix. This book is one of the longest in the series with very few events (considering its length) and filled with the mundane.
I think part of it is how fascinated I am with the fact that everyone in the world has a life just as complex as my own. It’s so hard to believe and think about, but ultimately an important truth that really shapes my perspective on life. I try to be as observant as possible when I am with someone in a place that they are more natural than where I usually see them, such as in their car or home as opposed to at school or work. Constantly, I’m comparing their actions to my own – not as a way to judge, but rather as a way to just see how different we all are while being distinctly the same.
The tiny differences in our day-to-day life distinguish each and every one of us in this packed planet of over seven billion humans, making them much more important than you might think.