in these recent years, my early 20s, and especially these past, most recent months, i’ve felt more insecure and more socially anxious that i have my entire life. it was my assumption, before i came to puget sound for undergrad, that college was the ultimate social experience, and i suppose in some ways it has been. but i feel more lonely now than i ever anticipated.
my freshman year i was extremely social, but the kind of social when you know everyone superficially, yet you’re close to no one, and when saturday night comes, you have no one to hang out with, no one to text to chill and watch a movie with, no one to laugh with or at if you know them well enough. i spent my energy meeting boys. yes, boys. that sounds incredibly lame, though it’s true. since i got to college i’ve been in two relationships, and they’ve been beautiful! i’ve never been so happy in my romantic life. yet i have only felt this lonely except in high school when my best friend, my soul sister, moved to nyc.
it’s like i know everyone, but i’m surrounded by strangers.
i’ve continuously tried to kindle relationships- asking people to hang out, do homework together, get coffee, and it’s great, super fun! then something seems to constantly glitch- they don’t show reciprocity, they’re super busy and don’t have time to spend on friends or going out, we have no chemistry, or other myriad bumps in the road. and to be completely honest, i feel very lonely sometimes now. yes, i have friends, but there’s always a ‘but’ in those relationships. my best friend still lives in nyc, my boyfriend is in san francisco, my friends here at school either aren’t so close to me, they have tons of other friends, they have girlfriends or boyfriends, or anything else like it.
i recently came across an article discussing friendship, the author shared that in attempting to accomplish any goal, it is essential to focus on the positivity of the journey in achieving that goal. in other words, many people, including very much so myself, find themselves angsting over the small steps, and particularly the perceived small failures, struggles, and challenges encountered and hopefully surmounted in achieving that goal. I often find myself feeling this quite strongly in my search for comrades, discovering myself stressing over spending time with people, social situation, parties, saturday nights and weekends. in hindsight, this is the paradox prohibiting me from fulfilling that which i’m attempting to achieve. in focusing on what i’m not achieving, i’m keeping myself from progressing to achieve it.
the most important aspect of life, i deduct at this very moment in my life journey, is, well, many things: enjoyment, learning, love, laughter, fun, success, appreciation, no one of which is more important than another. i’ve always deeply desired these components of my life, and i’ve found them in many places. that being said, i often find myself digging my own hole of loneliness and, to some extent, failure, for i focus too strongly on that which i’m not accomplishing.
in my time in college that i’ve spent working to find comrades, i’ve found that i’ve begun to very, very harshly judge and prejudge people, making rash deductions about their character and their computability with me. though this is entirely my own personal faux-pas, i feel that the environment in which i’ve grown up and the society in which i’ve matured has encouraged such unloving behavior and thoughts. i have come to truly distaste this habit of mine and have started to revert its presence in my life and mind. though it’s quite a challenge, it is paramount to me. this, i feel, is a central component of finding friendship and love in my life.
in summation, i’ve decided the best thing is to fake it til you make it, be confident until you radiate confidence, believe you’re a boss player until you do, in fact, achieve your goals.
as tupac shakur says, “picture me rollin’.”