You ever get stuck in a long line at the DMV and just scream to yourself that you wished that everyone in front of you would just disappear? Or ever get stuck in a traffic jam in New York City and just curse at all the cars in front of you?
Sometimes, other people are the bane of our existence. Sometimes, we just wish that we could do whatever we pleased, get whatever we wanted, without any holdup or restraint from others. To be able to do things with absolute freedom with no worries about what anyone else thinks. Basically, to have no sense of responsibility or concern for other’s well-being.
But in hindsight, would we really want to be the only person on this planet? To be able to eat whatever we wanted? Do whatever we please? And just basically have no restraint or correspondence from anyone else? How lonely would that be?
Sometimes, I personally get annoyed with all these responsibilities that are at my feet. Responsibility to my parents. Responsibility to my friends. My community. My customers. My suppliers. There just seems to be so much that I need to consider when trying to determine the best path forward in different contexts.
When I want to travel with my girlfriend, I sometimes need to make sure that my parents are OK with it simply because I also need to do my best to take care of them as well. I need to try my best to balance different stakeholders and make sure that there is a sense of responsibility involved.
I guess that what it entails to be growing up in the modern world. To have so many different people depend on you for various cases. You have to decide on the best course forward. You have to get your priorities straight. You have to sometimes consider things from other people’s points of view.
It can all be a bit overwhelming and frustrating at times. It feels to some extent that you are being shackled to the whims of others and that you have to take into account other people’s feelings and beliefs and perspectives. But, alas, that is life. We all have to do that. Even the richest and the most powerful people on the planet depend on others for service and relative approval.
Jeff Bezos depends on Amazon’s customers in order to help boost the value of his company. President Biden depends on other politicians for support and the implementation of policy. Even dictators, whom some believe can just say or do whatever they please, need to depend on the whims of the people to ensure some form of stability and security. Everyone depends on other people. Nobody goes at it alone. And nobody in a sense has absolute freedom.
That would be like being the only person that exists in the world. But again, how lonely would that be? That would be an utter punishment. Who would you confide in? Who can you share your experiences with? Who can you grow old with? Who can challenge you and provide you with invaluable advice?
I would not want to be the only person on this planet. And to a certain extent, I do not want to hold absolute power like a god. On paper, it sounds very seductive to hold that much control and wield that much influence. But at the end of the day, human beings will get bored with even that. And they will just crave for the next big rush of adrenaline.
So, in a sense, it is good that we are hindered by others. It is good that we need to look at things from other people’s perspective. It is good that we do not hold the keys to every single problem that exists in this world. And my goodness are there many.
I think as a collective society, our vulnerability and flaws and mistakes complement each other very well. Because there are so many people in this world, with different ideals and talents and skills, we can depend on each other for survival, innovation, and growth. We can depend on each other for a sense of purpose and fulfillment. And yes, we can depend on each other for joy and peace of mind as well.
Who wants to live on a lonely planet all by themselves? It is better that we struggle together and share our burdens together. It is better that we coexist and continue to innovate to the best of our abilities. It is better that we really are in this together. Because again, no one can do this on their own.
We can’t build skyscrapers and bridges. We can’t run a successful business. We can’t win basketball games. And we can’t live a fulfilling life without the guidance and support of others. So, cherish your community. Cherish your environment. Even the frustrating parts about it. And realize that it is better be together than to be alone.