Productive Stupidity

I love it when one of my classes presents me with a concept I need to better myself. My first day of Science Power and Diversity last week presented me with the idea of productive stupidity: being ignorant by choice. It means knowing that focusing on one thing will make us ignorant of other things, accepting that and acting anyway.

Productive stupidity is the ability to accept that you aren’t perfect and that’s okay. It’s the ability to move on from finding the wrong answer until you find the right one.

I have a hard time accepting defeat. I panic when I forget something or if I show up late to class. I have this superhuman expectation to get everything perfect and that ultimately makes life more difficult because things just go wrong. Sometimes, you just don’t have it in you to stay up and finish that paper, sometimes you just need a break and it’s up to you to take that break.

Productive Stupidity also means knowing when you are wrong, when you are doing doesn’t work and deciding to fix what’s wrong. I can’t keep comparing myself to everyone around me and saying that I should do all of the things they are doing. That takes away from what I am good at and what I know I can do.

So this semester, I’m working on me. I’m working on finding a balanced lifestyle, starting with a reset to get me in the right place. I spent the entire break dealing with symptoms of stress and illness, and I don’t want to live my life that way. I want to find what I’m good at and stick with it. I want to feel like my body won’t give out on me and that I can stay to do all of the things I don’t have time for just yet.

It’s okay that I can’t do all of these things. I noticed that I am the only one with such high expectations of myself. I don’t want to completely get rid of these expectations, but rather change them to something more realistic.

I want to be a happy, healthy me.


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