Today I broke my “one rule for life” and I certainly noticed the effects by the end of the day.
This ONE RULE I slowly developed in Montreal, Budapest, and it became clear in Sofia, Bulgaria.
When I practiced this ONE RULE for life, I became so much happier. I felt more fulfilled, though I must admit following the rule can be hard sometimes.
Note: This is me expressing from my own life. Individual circumstances apply. Take the gems and optimize your life as you see fit.
The One Rule For Life: One Daily INTENTIONAL or DEEP Social Interaction
Loneliness is one huge cause of depression & anxiety, especially in the 1st & 2nd world countries.
I travel the world and have had my fair share of loneliness, but looking back it doesn’t matter whether you’re traveling or living in one place your whole life.
I’ve felt lonely in Omaha (where I lived for 18 years), and I’ve felt deeply connected. Same for on the road- I spent 3 days in Greece and I didn’t feel lonely because I practiced this rule, yet I felt lonely in Cyprus where I spent 5 weeks because I didn’t practice this rule.
Did you know that loneliness can also HALF your lifespan? Loneliness is DEADLY, my friends.
If you’re feeling lonely please reach out to me and tell me your situation- I’ll create more content directly for you and I’ll share it with others also.
Now first, let’s break down what I mean by “intentional” or “deep.”
Intentional Social Interaction
Intentional social interaction is communicating with people that you want to communicate with.
It might not necessarily be deep- a party for example won’t be deep necessarily however by intentionally trying to connect with all kinds of people you fulfill this daily rule and prevent yourself from feeling lonely.
Intentional could also mean scheduling a hangout / meet up with acquaintances- by intentional I quite literally mean you intend to socialize, regardless of the result.
Forced socialization like school & work don’t count, unless they are deep. These people you don’t necessarily intend to socialize with but you do so out of circumstance- you’re both there for XYZ and socialize as a result.
Deep Social Interaction
Deep social interaction is when you feel deeply connected with someone. A positive deep interaction with a boyfriend or girlfriend you love counts (though not in every case).
It could also be sharing some of your deep feelings, past, memories, etc. with someone face to face.
If you meet people out of circumstance (ie. work) but you happen to find your work very meaningful & purposeful, and you can relate on a deep level with your co-workers because they are true friends, then you’ll be fine and achieve the standard of the rule.
Deep social interaction is only with people you feel for the most part safe to cry, express, and share deep things about each other’s lives.
One Final Rule: It Must Be Face To Face
Aha, and there must be one more rule for this rule to be effective: the social interaction must occur in person.
Sorry, but video calling someone doesn’t achieve the goal for the day, even if it’s deep & intentional.
There’s just something about being in person that helps you connect with humans better.
Video calling, social media, and texting are ways of “tricking” our conscious minds into thinking we’re communicating but our subconscious heart doesn’t actually feel the “energy” of the interaction as if you were in person.
Why Must I Have One Intentional or Deep, In-Person Socialization Per Day?
Because you won’t feel lonely and will live longer and be massively happy & have great friends & a social net you can count on!
I travel the world and my work is done in solitude. That is, I work just by myself in front of the laptop.
Going and working side-by-side other world travelers at my favorite coffee shop in Bulgaria helps create a sense of “community” but remember this doesn’t necessarily constitute “intentional” or “deep” interaction (unless I have a deep conversation as a result of this).
As a result of this solitude style of living I have a strong desire to socialize ASAP when work is finished.
Making friends can feel difficult & scary in a completely new country (where you don’t know the language also) and I found that this goal was a way of eliminating all loneliness, as well as giving me the social circle I always wanted.
This doesn’t require you be “extroverted” because you could have the same “deep” social interaction with 1-2 different people every single day and have it fulfill your needs.
Anyways, this solution right here solved my loneliness problem and social circle problem.
I found myself quickly able to make deep connections, and my social circle increased greatly.
Here are some additional tips if you’re lonely or want to try this.
Learn Good Conversation Skills
Stop the “how are you” & “where are you from” bullshit, no one cares and everyone knows it.
It’s too surface level. Dare to ask “what’s the most important thing in your life right now” 2 minutes into a conversation, you’d be surprised people generally answer.
Just go deep! People always say “oh it needs time bla bla bla” and that’s complete BS. I’ve had deep social interaction just like that time and time again because I’m willing to connect deeply and be vulnerable.
Of course more time with someone is better, etc. but when you’re traveling you learn how to connect very deeply very quickly.
Another good conversation trick is to read books and try think of conversations from different words in each sentence. Pick a word and try relate it to yourself somehow.
It’ll be difficult at first but once you learn it conversations will flow on as long as you wish them too.
Just getting out and practicing will help, but you have to practice intentionally otherwise you’ll never grow!
Get Everyone’s Contact Info
If you’re in any kind of group or party get everyone’s Facebook or phone number. Follow-up with everyone.
It’s very unlikely anyone will reject you. This strategy works perfectly for me.
All you need to make is one friend, meet their friends, and meet all of their friends, and then you’ll have a social circle of 50-100 acquaintances in the course of a month.
Surely a couple of these people will be deep friendship material!
Family & Meaningful Jobs Count (Kind Of?)
I live alone or with my girlfriend when I’m with her. Again, my job is done solo as well too.
Obviously it’s a bit different if you’re with family, a partner, or a meaningful job/career.
Everyone has different needs and depending on the quality of your relationships, careers, etc. will depend how much more time socializing you need as a human.
Family may help satisfy that one intentional or deep & face to face interaction per day, or maybe it won’t. For me it did only rarely.
Did this article help you in any way? Let me know!