Living in the 21st century is uber-cool! With the click of a mouse you can traverse the world, pay your bills lounging comfortably on your sofa and do so much more with your time. However, loneliness, depression, and seclusion are also offshoots of the fast-paced lifestyle and materialistic culture of the 21st century.
Bhanu Joshi, a researcher with Centre for Policy Research and heading a start-up, Youth for Policy and Dialogue, says, “Individuals are affected by a lot of things in their lives. Family problems, personal problems, work pressure, peer pressure etc can be the reason for someone to slip into depression if they have no one to talk it out with. If you have a vacuum in your life, you tend to stay aloof. You might also get addicted to online networking sites for lack of any one to talk to in real life. However, there are times when you become aware of the reality of the virtual world. It is, therefore, important for you to look for ‘real’ options to divert your mind and put it to some constructive use. Social organisations, NGOs and youth forums can be some of the best places you can get associated with,” he adds.
Attitude counts too. “There was a time when I didn’t know what to do because I has scored really badly in my Class 12 boards and was not getting admission anywhere.
There were constant fights at home and then loneliness set in as my friends got busy with their colleges. Then one day my brother got me a guitar and my life changed.
Things didn’t look so bleak. I trained in music, waited, got admission to a good college. Today, I am a Delhi University graduate, have just got a good job and have a music band of my own. All I can say is that when in depression, it is your attitude that counts. Until and unless you decide to help yourself nothing in the world can help you, says Vikram Patel (name changed on request).”
While music, dance and other creative avenues can help bring back the lost vibrancy in your life, what really matters are the bonds you forge during this time. Adds Joshi, “emotions are factored in when you want to work for a social organisation. Generally, when you get associated with any cause, you are not paid much for your work. You do it because of your passion. Reaching out to others can uplift your mood and help you live a meaningful life. There is so much in the world that requires your attention; there is no need to feel depressed . You are not the only one with problems. Look around and you’ll see what real problems are once you interact with
those living on the margins.”