Being selective with information

Sherlock once said to Watson, “I consider that a man’s brain is originally is like a little empty attic, and you have to stock it with such furniture as you chose. A fool takes all the lumber of every sort that he comes across, so that the knowledge which might be useful to him gets crowded out, or at best is jumbled up with a lot of other things so that he has difficulty in laying his hands upon it. Now the skillful workman is very careful indeed as to what he takes into his attic” 

We are surrounded by a variety of information. The process of receiving information that starts at our birth is continuing till date. Even if you exclude the first ten years, throughout the remaining time, you have been subjected to a variety of information. Our schooling involved a new lesson every day. But how much of it do you actually remember? This in no way means that schooling is not important. If a child is not exposed to a variety of information, it might develop a restricted mindset and will fail to realize its passion. The process of being selective starts after one has realized their field of interest and is mature enough to distinguish between important and unimportant information. On a daily basis, we come across all kinds of information, but not all of them are useful to us. In fact, the majority of the information that we receive each day is mainly for entertainment purposes and in no way contributes to our growth. Thanks to the internet, they can be accessed anytime and anywhere and need not occupy our minds. This does not mean that we are not supposed to enjoy life. This only means, we should never let the unwanted information occupy our mind to an extent that we lose hold of the useful piece of information.

Now, what information is useful varies for each one of us. We can only talk for ourselves. For example, for a software engineer, medical researches going on all around the world is not important, whereas for a doctor it is. The information that is useful to us depends on our interests and requirements.

But some information is required to be known to all as a part of our responsibility being a citizen and human being such as laws, crimes, self-defense, and general awareness. No compromises should be made on them. Carrying a piece of luggage that you surely know will be of no use to you is not preparation, it is merely an extra load. Wisdom lies in knowing what to know and what not to know.

Published by Sruti Shivakumar

An architect from India on a journey of self exploration

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