Trending topics in 2014? We can look to our media to tell us what they are, not to mention our favorite social media platforms. Among the more serious issues are the global economy, race relations in the US, the Ebola virus and terrorism, all making our digest of critical challenges.
Curious to see what topics were referenced most often on my own pages, I thought it would be interesting to consider the top 12 “trending topics” of 2014 in microcosm, here.
I am fully aware of the limited subject matter (though still reasonably diverse), the relative small scale when it comes to readership (though larger than I ever imagined), and the absence of statistically relevant data. Still, when I scanned results of the most popular posts in 2014, I see an array of everyday scenarios primarily concerned with how we relate to one another.
Here are the top 12, and not only in the US.
Daily Plate of Crazy’s Top 12 in 2014
Note any trends? I’m guessing you will.
A Challenging Year
Given the number of relationship articles that deal with challenges many of us face, you could say the world is in an interpersonal mess. But couldn’t we also conclude that we’re looking to improve the relationships we have? Looking to better understand the dynamics?
In addition to relationship posts, the various “best places to live” articles also fared extremely well. What makes these differ from the usual, in my opinion, are the questions recommended when considering a relocation or reinvention.
What I find intriguing: the “best places to live” page views came from all over the US, as well as Europe and parts of Asia.
What does that say about our desires to find “a better place?” Is it an indicator that we feel overly challenged wherever we are, economically or socially, and hope to find greater opportunity elsewhere? Does it speak to the milestones that encourage change? Or does it represent a desire for change which is commonly fantasized – and no more than that?
The Pursuit of Something Better
All stats or trends are subject to interpretation, and I can certainly interpret page views in any number of ways, especially as I have noted there is nothing representative in my “data sets.”
However, I find myself considering the nature of the subject matter that attracts and holds readers, time and time again. Should we see consistent searching for better places to live as a sign of contemporary dissatisfaction, and one that isn’t purely an American phenomenon? Is it a matter of economics, of globally distributed digital imagery that feeds into the “grass is always greener” syndrome – run rampant? Is it alienation from social and political systems that no longer seem to fit, regardless of where we live?
I might say all of the above, depending upon the circumstances; we are well aware that the world is a troubled place, and likely always has been. Media makes us (instantaneously) aware of this, and in exponentially sensational ways. So perhaps discontent is no more than the human condition. Might this be sufficient reason to allow our fingers to tap-dance their way to the possibility of a new locale to light – even if only in momentary dreaming?
On Dreams and Love
On that note, a word about dreams: I am fervently “for” – despite my intermittent cynicism. Whatever pushes us down, I believe in the power to pull ourselves back up, or damn well try. And this power is closely linked to our capacity to dream, and then follow those visions with action – whether to craft a better relationship, a better neighborhood, a better community, a better world – which most naturally begins in the better self, the more conscious self, the learning and evolving self; a self that will reject mediocrity.
This is why I am still here, writing and questioning. I hope it is part the reason that you continue to visit – and will – in the new year.
I remain encouraged that so many people are seeking to read about relationships of all sorts, placing the need for a good relationship – regardless of where they currently live – as high on the priority list. Ultimately, people matter. We want to be loved, to love well, and to love our families.
Speaking of love and the new year, please stop by for another essay series of “firsts for the first” that you may enjoy, courtesy of several very fine writers who so graciously agreed to participate.
Wishing you a safe and joyous celebration as 2014 ends, and 2015 begins.
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