Are you emotionally independent?
We, humans, are social animals. We cannot survive alone. A virus has reminded us of this the hard way. But don’t we all always wanted to be independent? To be able to make all our decisions. To live in the way we like. To dress the way we like. To be financially independent as soon as possible. No interference. We even want to choose the people we want around us. We hate being dependent on someone or something. We feel unpleasant. But are we really satisfied with this freedom?
Once the belly is full & we have enough resources to survive for some time, we turn into philosophers. We start paying attention to our emotions. And then we realize that even after working so hard and many achievements, we are not happy. Why is that? What else do we possibly need in the name of freedom?
Answer the following quiz to know more:
1. Do you need constant validation of your every action by people? Do you keep on contemplating what people say at every step? (Or the very popular-“Log kya kahenge”)
2. Do you consciously or unconsciously try to impress people all the time? Do you keep comparing yourself to others?
3. Do you lack confidence and are very easy to manipulate? Do you often doubt yourself?
4. Is your mind full of uncertainty?
5. Do actions by the people around you affect you?
If you answered yes to most of the questions, I have news for you. You are not independent. You are emotionally dependent though you never realized it. You concentrated your energy so much on achieving the outer stuff that you neglected your inner world completely. You could never achieve balance. And without it, no one can be happy ever! This is the reason you feel so confused.
In the era of globalization, we are super connected. Our life can never be fully independent. But we can minimize it to make our life simpler:
1.By accepting yourself:
Okay, so you are just a muggle. No hidden Hogwarts is waiting for you. Nothing magical is going to happen ever without your effort. To be ambitious is required, but not at the cost of forgetting your real self. You need to be aware of your strengths and weaknesses. Otherwise, you will get lost.
If you want to change yourself into the desirable ‘you’, you need to work on it.
And the first step is to know what you are. What is it you want?
Sit with yourself and explore. What do you do because your peer group likes it? What do you want to do? What makes you happy? Avoid underestimating or overestimating yourself when comparing to others. Everyone lives in their own time and space. You are the unique. Work on the best version of yourself. Don’t change it.
2. By forgiving and forgetting
We either live in the past or the future. We have been told on multiple occasions to live in the present. But it is hard. Isn’t?
We have evolved like this. Unless we learn from our past experiences and worry about the future, our survival is difficult. Even then, we have to try. Learn from your mistakes. Let go of regrets. You can’t go back. Forgive people who wronged you. Not for them, but for you. Forget the unimportant issues. No good can come if you remain entangled there.
3. By limiting your attachments
People can have different priorities at different points in time, especially in the world today. To expect undivided attention from your closed ones all the time is unreasonable. People change. Behaviors change. If you don’t accept this, you will end up in pain. It generates negativity, which may end up affecting your relations. You will land up in a vicious cycle of dissatisfaction. Try to detach yourself from time to time. It is human to feel for people and expect the same, but you shouldn’t hurt yourself in the process. Do not see the world through someone else’s eyes. Do not let anyone else decide for you.
4. By accepting judgment and criticism
We meet people who judge us all the time. Believe it, whatever you do, it is impossible to please everyone. There are 7 billion people on this earth, so there are 7billion different perspectives. Someway somewhere you will offend someone. You will never find peace in mind if you keep answering people’s expectations. You can only work on your reaction. Everyone feels good if they get acceptance. But don’t be overly dependent on that. Expectations are infinite. To start living a free and happy life, stop longing for attention and validation. Do what you think is right.
Criticism is good for growth. Accept it gracefully. Analyze it without any preconceived emotion. If you feel it’s good feedback, implement it. Otherwise, forget it.
Judgmental people are often sad people who are unable to cope with their issues. Pity them.
5. Read more
We need to read (or develop any other hobby) not only because we cannot know enough people. But also because relationships are vulnerable. They are not constant. They may be overwhelmed with time. Reading helps to disengage oneself and to know oneself better. Read whatever you like. It may be Fiction or Non-Fiction. You are not supposed to read boring books. Sometimes when you are unable to articulate your emotions reading helps you to do that.
Being emotionally independent is the complete awareness & acceptance of your thoughts and feelings. We need to take accountability for our frame of mind. We need to practice. Slowly we will become the in-charge of our reactions and behavior. That state will be real freedom. Trust yourself. You will be happier.