Modern day competition and the resultant stress have reduced us to individuals who live just for ourselves and our immediate family. Our life revolves only around office and office related works. Relatives, neighbors and community members are just formalities, rather obligations. Our sole aim is to earn more money in order to buy the latest gadgets which are considered the tools of happiness. Our routine life communication is mainly with office colleagues or customers.
Visiting friends and relatives, laughing and enjoying weekends together is becoming a custom of the past. With the hectic schedule of the weekdays, we prefer to pass our weekends quietly at home either just lazing or doing the pending housework. The concept of having a cherished best friend to whom we can freely open our heart is disappearing. We do still share our feelings with friends, but these friends are not real life, physically present friends, but invisible online friends. Real life social networking has been displaced by cyber networking. Can do such socializing really help in times of need? Does it really satisfy our emotional needs? Is this trend of confining ourselves to our own limited cocoon good for our emotional well being? The answer is- NO.
Socializing as stress buster
Routine life confined to the office and home, at some point becomes like a pressure cooker, which essentially needs to release steam, to avoid bursting. When one is in the office the mind is always thinking about the related job. We expect to rewind and rejuvenate once we get back home, only to find ourselves amongst children’s needs, cooking and other housework and preparing to get ready for the next day. A robotic life which has made us to forget even to smile! We find only busy, tired emotionless faces around us. Family get-aways are okay, but socializing is great. There’s much fun and laughter when you are with people whom you do not meet daily. The variety of experiences you share makes life richer. Meeting people other than from your profession gives a broader knowledge of life and times and your own worries may seem smaller and insignificant. We smile and laugh more with people outside our routine life.
A friend in need
A friend in person will always be more useful in times of need than an on-line friend. The net certainly keeps us connected to our old friends living faraway, but we must realize that we need to have a social circle closure home. When we socialize we develop feelings for each other, towards the members of the group. As we keep meeting and get to know each other, we naturally help each other in times of need. Such a circle gives us the confidence of knowing who all we can turn to in our times of need. Sometimes friends are more helpful than family. If you are a warm social person you will find many people by your side when you need.
Socializing with a purpose
Modern life philosophy is not to do anything from which theirs nothing to gain. This has made us selfish and we tend to seek friendship only with those from whom we hope to gain something. This is the reason why we are strangers even to our neighbors. Socializing certainly serves the purpose of making us happy. Other than this too people can come together to serve some common purpose like charitable work. People from different walks of life come together for some common purpose like maintenance of one’s residential colony or organizing some function for social causes etc. Such socializing not only brings people together but also gives us the satisfaction of serving the society in ways outside our regular paid jobs.
The best way to wean away children from internet and television is to make them realize the fun of having friends. Take your kids along to informal parties and get togethers where they can mingle with other families. This way they learn to make friends with kids of their age and also learn social etiquettes. It is also safe for kids to make friends within the family friend circle. The child also knows whom to call in times of need, other than the parents. They feel a sense of security within the close family friend circle. This is important in the nuclear family set up, where most often relatives are in other cities. So the child must know whom to turn to (someone they know as trustworthy to the family) when parents are not available.
So get out of the cocoon of daily life and socialize. Get to know your neighbors and community members. Smile, laugh and share your thoughts with people around. This way you not only make yourself happy but others around you too. Material luxuries can never give us the happiness of the memories of the good times shared with friends. Socializing helps us forget our personal grievances and help us develop deeper insight into the varied ways of life. Spreading cheer among good friends and receiving the same in return keeps us away from maladies of the modern life like loneliness, anxiety and depression.