Thought Catalog

This Is The New Loneliness

  • 0
Eugenio Marongiu
Eugenio Marongiu

It’s a weekday evening and you’re feeling restless. You’re texting friends and you’re watching Netflix and you’re on your laptop and you’re scrolling through Tumblr or Facebook or Instagram or Twitter. Your attention is in ten different directions, yet there’s a tug, a tiny voice in the back of your mind. It asks: what are you distracting yourself from? You ignore. Scroll again. Click again.

You send a text: “Wanna hang tomorrow night?”

“Sure, I need to leave my apartment eventually, lol”

“L O L, me too, goddddd. Ok, let’s plan tomorrow”

Tomorrow rolls around.

“You know, can we maybe rain check on plans? I’m cozy!”

“YES, omg, I totally wanted to bail, too. PERFECT.”

Then, you two text all night. Netflix on in the background. Computer on your lap. Scroll. Click. Scroll. Click. Refresh. Scroll. Click. Text.

Wait a second. What? How is this our new normal? What are we doing with our lives? Making plans with actual human beings and then canceling in favor of a screen, Netflix, gchat, bullshit, bullshit, bullshit. How is this okay? How are we accepting this?

How is this a life?

It’s not a life, actually. We cannot spend our days hunched over a screen forging a sense of human interaction. This is not what we were made for. I can guarantee all your best memories live within the moments with others. Where’s your great memory with the internet? Is this really all there is now?

When you look back on your life, will you be happy by how much Netflix you’ve watched? Will you be happy about the graveyard of plans you let fall by the wayside? Will you be happy when you’re surrounded by no one because we’ve all pushed each other away? Pushed and pushed and pushed and, in favor of what? What the hell are we pushing each other away for?

It’s the weirdest thing: our generation. We’re the least and most connected generation ever and yet if you spend some time on the internet, you see:

depression, undiagnosed, unchecked
anxiety, of the social variety
loneliness, rampant and unbelievable
sadness, like it’s a lifestyle
homebodies, like never leaving our apartments is healthy
introverts, like connection with other people is a bad thing
hate people! like it’s cool…
cancel plans! like it’s kind…
Netflix! like it’s a human being…

Do people have true mental illnesses? God, yes. Of course! But this isn’t about mental illness. People with diagnosable depression, anxiety, and other mental illnesses don’t make a lifestyle of it. They don’t make a home in those diseases. They frantically fight for their life, because they must. They get help. They furiously chase their happiness.

Our generation of sadness and loneliness is of the unchecked variety. Of wallowing. Of letting ourselves be disconnected from both others and ourselves. Learning to soothe more than heal. Learning to put a band-aid on problems instead of working through and solving our problems. If something is not immediate, we don’t want it, even if it’ll make us stronger. We’re not growing as people, not really. We’re shoving away “bad feelings” we don’t want to face by clicking, refreshing, scrolling until we’ve numbed ourselves out enough. It’s addiction.

Emotional strength is earned. It cannot be earned by self-distraction. And, that’s what all of this is. DISTRACTION.

Distraction from ourselves.
Distraction from potential pain.
Distraction from our lives, those hopes, those dreams.
Distraction from vulnerability.
Distraction from compassion.
Distraction from kindness.
Distraction from… each other.

And, it is making us miserable. It really is. Take a look at your life. Take a look at how you spend your time. Are you happy? Do you have joy? When’s the last time you sat in front of a computer screen for longer than 2-3 hours and walked away feeling joyous and energized? When’s the last time a computer, a television screen, an iPad, a phone… made you feel alive? When’s the last time you felt you were loved and taken care of and healed? When’s the last time you felt strong?

We’ve taken it too far, that’s what is problematic. The internet and these devices are not wholly unhealthy, but it’s the obsession, the constant consumption, the way it breeds a lack of connection with real people. And, it does breed that.

Can all of this technology be great? Yes. But we’re not using it that way. We’re being reckless. We’re acting like none of this matters, that how we spend our days is not how we spend our lives, but it all matters and how we spend our days is exactly how we spend our lives. It is. It just is.

I think we’re afraid, but that’s the whole point of life—that facing down our fears provides for a richer experience. We are not meant to circumvent the process of healing ourselves. We need to face who we are in order to be who we are. We cannot find true connection and true love and the purity of both of those experiences while spending our days not caring about others or ourselves. To not care is to be cool now? Pizza! Netflix! Do nothing all day! Sweatpants! Homebody! Introvert! Hahahahahahahahahah, we’re all so sad and hate each other!

But, it’s not funny. None of this is.

This is your life. YOUR. LIFE. Do you get it? This is it. And you’re fucking wasting it. Wake up. Life happens in a blink. Once it’s gone, it’s gone. Don’t scroll, click, refresh it away. Be here, now. Show up. Care about shit. Care about others. Care about yourself. Be better than this. Let’s all do it. And, if we all do it: maybe it’ll be a fucking revolution. Finally.

I’m sick of this sadness. I’m sick of this loneliness. I’m sick of this disconnection from others. I’m so sick of it. Aren’t you? TC mark

If you want more articles like this, download the Thought Catalog iOS app here or follow us on Facebook.

Read This

More from Thought Catalog

Thought Catalog Videos


    • http://themusingsofjac.wordpress.com themusingsofjac

      Reblogged this on the musings of jac.

    • http://musclegas.wordpress.com sandyda10

      This is contradictory to blogging itself and social media. LOL!

    • https://thoughtcatalog.com/heidi-priebe/2015/03/heres-why-youre-still-single-based-on-your-myers-briggs-personality-type/ Here’s Why You’re Still Single Based On Your Myers-Briggs Personality Type | Thought Catalog

      […] Read this: This Is The New Loneliness Read this: 10 Bikini Waxers Reveal Their Most Brutal Experience On The Job Read this: 15 Things You Should Never Tell Your Boyfriend (For His Own Good, And Yours) Read this: 17 Early Signs That Your Relationship Is Off To The Right Start Cataloged in […]

    • https://thoughtcatalog.com/johanna-mort/2015/03/19-things-only-women-with-a-low-maintenance-fashion-sense-understand/ 19 Things Only Women With A Low Maintenance Fashion Sense Understand | Thought Catalog

      […] Thought Catalog on Facebook here. For more writing like this from Johanna, follow her on Facebook. Read this: This Is The New Loneliness Read this: 14 Things Only Neat Messy People Understand Read this: 17 Signs You And Your Best Friend […]

    • https://thoughtcatalog.com/jamie-varon/2014/12/this-is-how-we-date-now/ This Is How We Date Now | Thought Catalog

      […] Read this: This Is The New Loneliness Read this: I Inherited My Brother’s Laptop After His Suicide, What I Found On It Made Me Glad He Did It Read this: This Is How You’ll Save Yourself Cataloged in […]

    • http://beautyluxx.wordpress.com BeautyLuxx

      Reblogged this on BeautyLuxx.

    • BigFieldy

      Reblogged this on One Day At A Time and commented:
      This is so true. Especially so in my case I suppose. But I also think it applies to a lot of people in general. The more connected be are, the lonelier we become.

    • https://thoughtcatalog.com/jamie-varon/2015/04/your-life-is-yours-to-destroy-or-build/ Your Life Is Yours To Destroy Or Build | Thought Catalog

      […] 'onreadystatechange', func ); } } )(); Read this: This Is How You’ll Save Yourself Read this: This Is The New Loneliness Read this: This Is How We Date Now Read this: How To Actually Be […]

    • bibblybubble

      Reblogged this on NIDR and commented:
      This has shone new light. It is absolutely true that “we’re the least and most connected generation ever”. Get out there and live life the way we once did before the internet took over our lives. In a way I feel like this is our 21st century Zombie apocalypse. We walk with our heads down staring at our smart phones. Shuffling here and there with the disease in our hands or pockets. Ever wander about aimlessly without your smart phones? Do you feel completely lost?
      Then it is time to cure that disease. Take baby steps. Start by enjoying the nature which is given to you to look at for FREE instead of using your 4G to look at facebook newsfeed or twitter or instagram or Tumblr. Spend more time with friends without the use of smart phones. Live life, just not through your phone.
      In other words, use the internet with care. Balance it out.

    • http://mollyinthemountains.wordpress.com Molly

      Reblogged this on Molly in the Mountains and commented:
      I’ve been thinking about this exact thing a lot lately…

    • http://SiddharthDas.wordpress.com Siddharth

      Reblogged this on Untold stories by unknown.

    • https://thoughtcatalog.com/amy-mcdonald/2015/04/the-wonderful-effects-of-stepping-outside-of-your-comfort-zone/ The Wonderful Effects Of Stepping Outside Of Your Comfort Zone | Thought Catalog

      […] Feeling A Bit Stuck In Life Read this: 12 Great Books And The Perfect Kind Of Mood To Read Them In Read this: This Is The New Loneliness Cataloged […]

    • https://thoughtcatalog.com/miriam-verheyden/2015/04/10-frustrating-reasons-why-writing-is-just-like-dieting/ 10 Frustrating Reasons Why Writing Is Just Like Dieting | Thought Catalog

      […] Kind Of Mood To Read Them In Read this: 50 Quotes To Ease The Eternally Single Girl’s Soul Read this: This Is The New Loneliness Cataloged […]

    • https://thoughtcatalog.com/anonymous/2015/04/13-things-i-told-myself-i-wouldnt-do-again-but-i-did-anyway/ 13 Things I Told Myself I Wouldn’t Do Again (But I Did Anyway) | Thought Catalog

      […] Read this: This Is The New Loneliness Read this: 12 Great Books And The Perfect Kind Of Mood To Read Them In Read this: 50 Quotes To Ease The Eternally Single Girl’s Soul Cataloged in […]

    • https://thoughtcatalog.com/keith-mains/2015/04/words-of-encouragement-for-the-broken-hearted/ Words Of Encouragement For The Broken Hearted | Thought Catalog

      […] Feeling A Bit Stuck In Life Read this: 8 Things I Learned When I Realized I Didn’t Love Him Read this: This Is The New Loneliness Cataloged […]

    • https://thoughtcatalog.com/nicoletarkoff/2015/04/how-to-forgive-even-when-you-dont-want-to/ How To Forgive Even When You Don’t Want To | Thought Catalog

      […] Read this: This Is The New Loneliness Read this: 12 Great Books And The Perfect Kind Of Mood To Read Them In Read this: 50 Quotes To Ease The Eternally Single Girl’s Soul Cataloged in […]

    • https://crossfitsmith.wordpress.com/2015/04/13/do-you-create-real-smiles-or-just-sit-back-and-envy-them/ Do You Create Real Smiles… Or Just Sit Back and Envy Them? | CrossFit SMITH

      […] this article resonated with me in such a strong way. How often do we sit and click, scroll, click scroll, […]

    • https://thoughtcatalog.com/jamie-varon/2015/04/how-to-feel-free/ How To Feel Free | Thought Catalog

      […] 'onreadystatechange', func ); } } )(); Read this: This Is How You’ll Save Yourself Read this: This Is The New Loneliness Read this: This Is How We Date Now Read this: How To Actually Be […]

    • https://thoughtcatalog.com/jazz-tanchengco/2015/04/to-the-girl-he-loved-before-me/ To The Girl He Loved Before Me | Thought Catalog

      […] this: A Letter To The Person Who Didn’t Give Me The Love That I Deserve Read this: This Is The New Loneliness Read this: 23 Promises All Men Should Be Able To Make To Their Girlfriends Cataloged […]

    • https://thoughtcatalog.com/gabrielle-woodward/2015/04/the-trouble-in-loving-with-your-whole-heart/ The Trouble In Loving With Your Whole Heart | Thought Catalog

      […] this: 50 Quotes To Ease The Eternally Single Girl’s Soul Read this: This Is The New Loneliness Read this: 8 Things I Learned When I Realized I Didn’t Love Him Cataloged […]

    • https://thoughtcatalog.com/jenesa-chua/2015/04/if-i-give-you-a-second-chance/ If I Give You A Second Chance | Thought Catalog

      […] Read this: This Is The New Loneliness Read this: 12 Great Books And The Perfect Kind Of Mood To Read Them In Read this: 50 Quotes To Ease The Eternally Single Girl’s Soul Cataloged in […]

    • https://thoughtcatalog.com/heather-elizabeth/2015/04/this-is-how-your-heart-will-break/ This Is How Your Heart Will Break | Thought Catalog

      […] Want A Relationship Right Now Read this: 8 Things I Learned When I Realized I Didn’t Love Him Read this: This Is The New Loneliness Cataloged […]

    • https://thoughtcatalog.com/christine-kelley/2015/04/a-condom-does-not-imply-consent-for-sex/ A Condom Does Not Imply Consent For Sex | Thought Catalog

      […] Learned When I Realized I Didn’t Love Him Read this: 14 Things Its Time You Forgave Yourself For Read this: This Is The New Loneliness Cataloged […]

    • https://thoughtcatalog.com/nicoletarkoff/2015/04/sometimes-the-hardest-part-is-letting-go/ Sometimes The Hardest Part Is Letting Go | Thought Catalog

      […] this: A Good Man Is The Most Difficult Kind Of Man To Love Read this: This Is The New Loneliness Read this: 12 Great Books And The Perfect Kind Of Mood To Read Them In Cataloged […]

    • https://thoughtcatalog.com/jamie-varon/2015/04/7-feelings-that-seem-negative-but-actually-indicate-youre-growing-as-a-person/ 7 Feelings That Seem Negative But Actually Indicate You’re Growing As A Person | Thought Catalog

      […] 'onreadystatechange', func ); } } )(); Read this: This Is How You’ll Save Yourself Read this: This Is The New Loneliness Read this: This Is How We Date Now Read this: How To Actually Be Brave Cataloged […]

    blog comments powered by Disqus