I've posted this before, but I think it's worth repeating... Perhaps you have seen this video of Louis C.K. appearing on Conan O'Brien and hating on cell phones. While hilarious, the best part of this short (6 minute) video is actually Louis C.K.'s comment on why we are so eager to reach for our phones in this day and age.
I urge you to watch the video (not at work just to be safe), but in short Louis C.K. admits that he, and probably many of us, can have a fear of being alone. When he feels that "pit of sadness and aloneness," as he puts it, he finds an urge to pick up his phone and "write 'hi' to like 50 people." Many of us know what he is talking about. Maybe you don't feel that everyday, maybe just sometimes. Or maybe you see friends or family experiencing that reflex.The best part of Louis C.K.'s appearance has to be what he says next though:
“You know what? Don’t [pick up the cell phone]; just be sad. Just let the sadness hit you like a truck. I let it come, and then I pulled over and cried so much, and it was beautiful. Sadness is poetic; you’re lucky to live sad moments. And when I let myself feel sad, I felt happy moments come in, because your body has like antibodies that bring like happiness to meet the sadness. I was grateful to be sad and I met it with profound happiness. I was grateful.”
And I think he is right. When we allow that brief wave of loneliness in, and don't distract ourselves with our phones or plotting and planning the rest of our day, we allow ourselves to "live in the moment." We allow ourselves to live in the present. Rushing around all day, trying to fill in all the gaps so we don't feel those moments of aloneness, push us towards an anxious life. If you are struggling with anxiety, I urge you to focus on living in the present. Allow yourself to be alone.