I was watching a show out of pure boredom when one of the characters posed this question, “When do you feel lonely?”
And that question took me by surprise. It wasn’t so much of the question ITSELF that caught me off-guard but rather how a part of me desperately wanted to answer that question, to share my answer with someone, to let it be known. And that, surprises me.
But most importantly, why was it so easy for me to formulate an answer?
I feel lonely when I see something funny or interesting and fail to find someone who feels the same way. I feel lonely when I suddenly get an epiphany about an issue and there is nobody who can discuss it intently with me. I feel lonely when the people I used to hang out with begin to find ways to exclude me. I feel lonely when I find myself spending more time on my own. I feel lonely when silence becomes a regular company.
Because it shows as if nobody wants to be around me.
As I slowly allowed these answers to naturally flow out, I began to see the common cause of my loneliness: People. How ironic it is that company, which is meant to bring happiness and comfort to individuals, can be the cause of loneliness. And this happens because we tend to be too dependent on people. On our relationship with them, the moments we create with them. A good day to us, is when we are partying with a group of people. Acceptance is when our phone is busy buzzing with messages from friends, when we are busy going out with friends. If your phone is quiet, it means that you are not wanted because your friends are not searching for you. If you are eating alone in a restaurant, it is a shameful thing because you cannot find a person who wants to spend time with you. If your friends are too busy coping with their new life, it means you are forgettable.
Suddenly, your worth is based on people. The number of friends you have. How popular you are. How socially busy you are. But here’s the thing, when you evaluate your worth based on people, you are meant to fail. It is like, deciding to test your healthiness of your body by dangling on a branch. “If this branch breaks, it means that I’m too heavy and unhealthy.” Of course the branch will break. The law of physics states so. Similarly, if you attach your worth to people, you will break because people will definitely fail you in a way or another. They disappoint you, argue with you, and break your heart.
Now, I am not saying that we cannot trust anyone. That is not my point. I am saying that we should not base our worth on people. We should base our worth on ourselves.
What kind of a person do you want to be? What values do you want to uphold? What is important to you?
If we base our worth on the amount of love and acceptance we have for ourselves, then we wouldn’t have to ask ourselves about being lonely.
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