Balancing social closeness and social distance

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Do you reach mostly to your inner world or your social world?  Your choices will be personal to you. Photo by Marc-Olivier Jodoin on Unsplash

We all have a choice when it comes to social relations.  We can be as close to others as we like, and that will have rewards and consequences.  Or we can be as distant from others as we like, and this too will have rewards and consequences

THE REWARDS OF CLOSENESS

Being close to others means that:

  • we know all their business, and they know ours
  • we are less likely to forget others’ special concerns, events and occasions
  • we are more likely to be able to attune ourselves to their nature and habits
  • we are less likely to be lonely
OTHER CONSEQUENCES OF CLOSENESS

However, it also means that:

  • we have less privacy
  • we are more likely to compromise our own special concerns, events and occasions
  • we can lose attunement with our own nature and habits
  • we are more likely to feel socially overwhelmed
THE REWARDS OF DISTANCE

Being distant from others means that:

  • we can live free from intrusion and interference
  • we can develop deep inner worlds, and follow personal agendas
  • we can get to know ourselves deeply, and adapt our immediate world to suit
  • we can feel freely, and experience those feelings safely
OTHER CONSEQUENCES OF DISTANCE

However, it also means that:

  • we can get bored of managing ourselves
  • we can become quirky and unable to integrate
  • we can become intolerant of the presence of others
  • we can become lonely, yet fearful of establishing contact
A MEDITATION

How do I prefer to relate to others?  Do I prefer to keep close to others; or do I prefer to keep a distance?

What about other people I know?  Do I know them as people who like to keep close; or as people who keep their distance?

There are advantages and disadvantages of closeness.  Am I prejudiced?  Do I insist on everyone being close to me, even when they want space?  Why do I do that?  Could it be that I haven’t learned to let people move away from me?  Do I get insecure?

Or do I insist on everyone keeping their distance from me, even when they want to be close?  Why do I do that?  Could it be that I haven’t learned to let people come close to me?  Do I get overwhelmed?

How can I balance my life better, so that I show an understanding of both closeness and distance?

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