We live in volatile times. Our devices, harboring our irreplaceable work and memories, keep dying on us. But the art of repair has gone out of fashion, and so, many of us migrate as much as they can save of their data from one phone or computer to another – repeating the cycle every couple of years.
Add to that the increase in actual, physical migration of an actual, human being today, and you have found the restless state many of us find ourselves in these days. We can potentially thank globalization and the coming down of borders and limitations of all kinds for an increased mobility of the individual. People today see more change than ever before – be it a change of careers, of living places, or friendships.
All this change is exciting and frightening at the same time. New experiences help us grow, see ourselves and the world from a different perspective. New experiences challenge old habits and worldviews that have become much too comfy for us. New experiences take us out of our comfort zone and remind us of our full potential and just what we are capable of.
With all that change, however, it has also become increasingly hard to maintain our memories. Every creature craves a certain amount of continuity in their lives. But recent years have made it pretty common – actually not at all rare anymore – to let go of meaningful relationships as soon as there is trouble brewing on the horizon. We’re seeing more fallouts among friends, partners and relatives today than a few decades ago. We seem to have transitioned to a culture of Easy Come, Easy Go.
One effect of all these changes I’ve noticed is that some of us have started to believe that life is a ladder to be climbed, that things keep getting better all the time, that the next job is going to bring us more fulfillment and more money.. and in very much the same fashion, we can start to feel like we outgrow our relationships. And if there is conflict between us and someone else, we take it as a sign that it cannot possibly work out.. and that there are better friends or partners somewhere, just waiting for us to ditch our current attachments.
How do you decide whether a relationship is worth fighting for? If there’s a cloud on the horizon, do you pack your things for another state? Or are you able to accept less-than-perfect circumstances for a certain amount of time?
How do you know it’s worth sticking with someone through the tougher times?