A few days ago I felt compelled to ask my cousin a question. The dialogue went something like this:
Me: “Would you say that you are someone who highly values other people?”
Cousin: “Yeah definitely.”
He pondered this for a moment before giving his answer. His reasons were:
- He’s really ingrained with the people he knows.
- He uses social interactions as a way of learning about himself.
This last point surprised me; it’s not something I’ve considered. I’m really used to the idea of internally analyzing myself in order to discern ‘who I truly am’ since no one else is capable of giving an accurate holistic picture; only the person living my life can do that.
Yet when I think about it, it makes a lot of sense. We all have our own internal idea of who we are, but until we interact with another person, & have it challenged, that idea is just a fantasy. Other people can make us think about aspects of ourselves we have never considered.
I guess that ties back into what started this whole train of thought – I don’t like what my interactions with people have told me. The messages I tend to receive are:
- My default instinct is to wall myself off from others.
- People can interact with each other just fine, but they have trouble interacting with me.
- People have a lot to offer me, but I don’t have much to offer them.
- There’s still a lot more I need to learn & experience.
- I’m a good diligent guy, yet I’m no fun to talk to.
Given that context, it seems understandable now why I would prefer to isolation myself sometimes, no matter how bad I may want someone with me. Guess I’m more emotional then I seem to be.