The Student News Site of Gannon University since 1947


The Student News Site of Gannon University since 1947


The Student News Site of Gannon University since 1947


In two weeks, will your problems remain the same?

March 22, 2024/Midnight 


Currently, I am taking a critical thinking course that has been challenging my analytical skills and perspectives on life. A reoccurring topic that we discuss is the future and the problems we may face.  

Naturally, we tend to fear the future because of its unfamiliarity. This is especially true given the recent activities afflicting the world.  

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These fears are valid; however, let us consider our current issues. A question to ask yourself is will these problems persist in two weeks? Most often they won’t.  

Evaluating your problems in this matter isn’t invalidating them. Rather, it is a guide in rationalizing and prioritizing your thoughts and mental health. 

When I researched the topic further, I found an article from Molly Shea called the 5×5 rule. In this article she talks about all the miniscule problems she noticed when she found a journal from her college years. This led her to ask herself, will this issue affect me in five years? If the answer were no, she would give herself five minutes to process it and then let it go. 

I found this very thought provoking in the sense as humans we tend to fear the worst, which can be very harmful to our mental well-being. 

A question proposed in the lecture is that by having these fears are we envisioning an illusory future since we are constantly assuming the worst? 

Often this is the case. If we consider the 5×5 rule, we will see that many of our issues are temporary, but the ones that will affect the future are reoccurring among generations. To make sense of this, the professor asked us what do you suspect are the three most pressing issues for the outlook of about 2040? A few ideas posed included climate change, global conflicts, overbearing advances in technology, inflation, and other economic issues. These issues are common concerns among every generation.  

To reaffirm this idea, we were asked what we think an individual would say in 2008 if they were asked what the most prominent issues in 2024 would be? Considering the recession, we agreed that some of these ideas we gathered for the fears of 2040 would have been similar. 

Regardless of the nature of an issue, no matter how large or miniscule, it is important to take a moment and reflect to see if it is important to dwell on. If you feel that it can impede your future endeavors, address it. If it is not an issue worth contemplating, process it for five minutes and then move on.  

After all, life is too short to sit around and ponder all life’s problems and worries.  

Link to Molly Shea’s article:×5-rule-changed-my-anxiety-for-good/ 

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About the Contributor
Aubree Etling
Aubree Etling, Roundtable Editor
Hello, Aubree Etling is a third year in the Physician Assistant program. She is from Jeannette, PA. She is also the secretary of Gamma Sigma Sigma as well as a member of GUSPAS. This semester is her first time writing for The Gannon Knight for the Roundtable.

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