As a follow up to observations, this week I started thinking about whether we are ever truly alone. And I don't mean in the sense that there are little green men on the moon, but in our everyday lives. I'm fascinated by people, I think the way we interact with people and the way our lives are dominated by people is so fundamental to a human life.
I was sitting in my class this morning and as my tutor was talking about the writing assignment for this week I zoned out, and I just started to look at all the different people in my classroom. The more I zoned out the more I began to think about the people that were around me. They not only had strong physical differences, but different writing styles, different stories and different circumstances that led them to a Thursday morning class. The more I thought about my classmates the more I thought about the different people in general that you meet over a lifetime. Whilst I am only twenty I feel like especially since graduating high school my interactions with people and the amount of people in my social circle has changed drastically. The minute you leave your comfort zone, or your safety bubble your life will change. I don't know whether it's just school environments, but for me, my friendship group was my lifeline. No matter how hard the days were I was so thankful that I was surrounded by such strong, supportive and incredible women. I look back so fondly on these memories.
However I'm not in High School anymore, I don't see the same people everyday and as life moves on. I believe people change, not necessarily in a bad way or in a good way but I do think change is possible. Sometimes it is hard to remember that everything happens for a reason. People come into our lives because we need them. Everyone who becomes a part of your life, whether it's longterm or short term is there to help you grow and continue on your journey. It's sort of similar in that sense to a Christmas Carol, except rather than three different people changing your life it's on slightly a larger scale. Making these connections with people is such an important part of our physical development. Whether it's the cranky English teacher that almost failed you or just a stranger you happen to strike up a conversation with on the train - every person we meet is going to impact our life in some way.
Our lives are full of relationships. Whether you're having a home day or you're out and about running errands, you're constantly interacting with people. Our lives are so saturated with advertising and communication that sometimes it is hard to switch off from the world. It's hard to have a moment where we aren't tapping away on our phones or even where we're not interacting with people in some way, shape or form. The more I think about it the only time I'm not really communicating is when I'm asleep and then most days I'm woken up by my phone buzzing with notifications or my mum banging on my bedroom door asking if I should be up yet.
Our lives and my own personal feelings is dominated by my social interaction. We are constantly fed this idea that you're either an introvert or an extrovert. You either love people or you hate them and you know in my opinion I don't think that we truly can be segregated so specifically into these strict categories. Some days I love to be around people and be with my friends and family, other days I want to sit in my room all day on my laptop binge watching TV shows. Even on those days I'm generally still texting, snapchatting and messaging my friends. I don't think I ever have moments when I'm truly alone and I don't know how I feel about that.
There are so many things that define who we are as people. Everyone has a completely unique socialisation process. It will define how you make connections with people, how you view the world and it can even effect some of the biggest decisions you will ever have to make. However, like I mentioned before you are allowed to change. No one is the same person they were 10 years ago.
Change is such a fundamental part of life and you know what sometimes someone might not like the changes that you've made, whether they are for better or worse. At the end of the day it comes down to choice. I'm very much a believer in the fact that everyone is entitled to their own opinion and as individuals we have the right to express our freedom of speech and our freedom of choice, even if it's not necessarily the most popular opinion. As we have that freedom of choice, we also can choose whether you agree with everything you see, read, hear or engage with.
Regardless of the choices we make, I have enough faith in humanity to believe in people. I believe that people can change, and whether you agree with me or not, that's entirely up to you. You have the ability to become the person you want to be. There may be some obstacles on your road to this and you may have to break some eggs but at the end of the day if you make a decision, and it's not the right decision, just make another one.
At the end of the day, we are constantly growing and changing and we are on a journey to becoming the best possible version of yourself.
This piece is inspired by the new Netflix series 13 Reasons Why, based on the novel by Jay Asher. I won't reveal too much because I truly think that even if you're not really a "TV person" you should take some time to watch it. Even if it's just from a theoretical perspective. The content is so important and is so relevant to so many things that either you or someone you know are living through every day. Watching all thirteen episodes makes you think about every single person in your life. It makes you think about the connections you make with people and how you never will ever truly know how much someone can be suffering. The most minuscule act of random kindness or even the nasty things we can say or do to people might seem minor to you, but you never know how that could affect someone else. Our choices and our actions will define us and I don't want you to ever feel alone.
Be kind to people, be kind to yourself and know I'm always here if you need me.