We are our own best friend, life is good when we do this job well. To care for, to cherish, value and want what is best for ourselves, from the purest depths of our heart is the foundation upon which everything in our lives as independent, mature, adults should be set. If we are not adequately in charge of ourselves then the world will seem skewered: The life we live is a reflection of how we feel inside.
Why do I say all this? I say it because I want to analyse how this core and noble notion can become terribly warped and misaligned as it ends up, in itself, being the force that drives many a person to the street. How does it do so? It does so, in my experience, from the perspective of wanting to be free, to be on one’s own and beholden to no one; but in fact what can easily transpire is that the impulse for detachment increases as one slips into a position where one comes by default to be wedded to the nomadic way of living on the street.
This outcome stems from a contradiction. No one really wants to be in such an end position and yet the route leading to this place is subconsciously sought. In wanting control of one’s life, one may deep down be only doing this to avoid the pain of emotional hurt. No one can be allowed to get close, life is safer on one’s own. If such a person has been wounded by the ordinary structures of intimate, emotional life then the abandonment and emotional pain that is trying to be avoided ends up being enacted and recreated by the events that one brings about in their latent desire for freedom and emotional autonomy. It is the why, the intentions, underpinning our proclaimed conscious actions that really determine where we find ourselves in life. If subconscious fears are the driver behind, even, our most seemingly empowered and constructive actions, then the pain contained within that subconscious fear will afflict itself upon one in life in a new and freshly warped way……and thus that empowered independent action one thought one was making is instead the cause of a harsh, recriminating feeling of deflating belittlement, which itself was the inverse of that original conscious decision that came with the goal of being the author of one’s journey.
When one assumes the role of being one’s own best friend in the most firm and responsible way, then one is in control of one’s life. One does not control the world, that is fine, one is at ease with this for they recognise and are secure in what they can affect. Everything else they are able to accept since fear plays no part in the subconscious intentions of one’s freely uninhibited actions. From such a place one is fully worthy of being one’s own best friend.
And whatsmore, the more one prioritises oneself as one’s best friend the immeasurably and insurmountably more that one has to give to others. The more secure we are the more open our heart, and the more we care for, and have to share with others, the more love all round that one has to give. Being one’s own best friend, therefore, is about being in control and responsible for ourselves, and if the intentions in this wish are pure then what flourishes on from here is a greater connection to life and to others. Such a person is no island, on the contrary, there is an unbounded closeness to others that is bourne out of love. For this person the independent, autonomous, being they seek to realise comes from a place of being open to anything and everyone in life.
To be one’s best friend comes from feeling fundamentally good within. One has to be comfortable with oneself, which means one can handle, and furthermore, embrace being alone. Everything springs from our own foundations we nurture within. If we know how to be serene when stood alone and with only oneself in the world, then one has the grounding to reach out to others and embrace the deepest of human relationships.
Certain people who end up on the street do so because they want to be there. There is something more wholesomely secure and safer with being in this place. Alone in this place, in certain key regards, no one or nothing can get at you when your ties to society have been shed. To go to the street in such a way, I propose from experience, can happen because from an overriding part of oneself within, there is the desire to be one’s own boss and answerable to no one. One wants to be that person who is in control of their life. Noble sentiments perhaps, but the undercurrent to what is propelling this is dark. The subconscious intentions behind the wish come from ghastly fears, from past abandonment, betrayal and harm whose emotional pain is suppressed within the psyche.
To live in normal life and to function in the world comes through the positions we hold and the roles we play. Through this we have responsibilities. Bills have to be paid and jobs have to be held down. Structures in civilised life are held together through a web of networks and relationships which are threaded tighter by a wide assortment of transactions and interactions whose facilitation is interwoven further by all range of emotional and personal linkages. Much of the fabric is tacit, it goes unsaid since these are the familiar, normal and secure subconscious practices. To feel at ease within the bosom of this webs netting one needs an adequate degree of emotional tranquillity within. Society’s functioning is based upon trust. If we do not have faith in people and in their particular actions then in everything we do we have to be on guard and excessively conscious of our every step. Such a kind of hyper vigilance is exhausting because nothing is certain when there is danger potentially lurking around every corner. If this on some level is what someone feels when a part of society in their everyday life, then to live in this place may be just too emotionally onerous. The sore wounds we fear being reopened keep on being painfully scratched at the more we try to deny them.
Of course for these pressures to impose themselves to such excessive degree then there must be some substantial locked away pain within. If the result is that one would sooner go to the street than to partake in societal life then the place this decision comes from is one of flight and fear. The decision to have done this may have been wrapped in the apparent decisive resolution of wanting to be in control of oneself and one’s life, when in fact really it did not come from such a place of strength, and alas the acts intentions are in fact flimsy. This is not a life lived in which one is one’s own best friend.
To get away from life. To take off is freedom. One can feel safer this way. One is beholden to no one. No need to justify anything to anyone. Immunity from the wearisome judgements of others; no tip toeing, no answering to anyone. Nor are there those same unnerving doubts of your place in things, no crippling insidious fears of not being worthy of position and your standing in life. No agonising horrors of everything being lost as you are left alone and abandoned. Better to leave the this ship yourself than to be chucked overboard in a sudden, unexpected instant by someone or something in society that abandons you in a swift, terrorising moment into the ocean. If this sensation happened again and again as a child then this provides your basis for what the world is like. You may never shed the sense that its repetition is imminent. Why risk this? Why be made to feel powerless in life’s fundamental key passages as you remain beholden to this fear? And why live in fear of what acquaintances, and worse still your apparent friends may do to you in the aftermath of a close intimate moment? Why wait around, hanging around, trying to live when being thrown overboard is surely inevitable? Why live on in normal societal life when such a sea of doubts subsume your mind? Why ever risk this? Take off and be on your own. It is safer this way. When there is no one to crush you there is not the temptation to futilely hope that the impossible, unimaginable things you crave can work out.
To be thus in such a place where to stay and to remain on the street is a solace then some basic fundamental notions of security and trust must be askew within. If the notion of home and of family is beset with trauma and pain then one can be in perpetual fear of recreating familiar perilous grounds in their life afresh.
When our most integral emotions which underpins everything that is most intimate and personal in our interactions and relationships have been stabbed away at, where notions of gratitude, worth, trust, love come warped with senses of emptiness, abandonment, despondency and the crushing of one’s sense of self worth and one’s hopes, then the consequence is that life can be a minefield. If one’s most core emotional needs have been made crooked, then the glow of societal life and connection with others is meretricious to such a person. Best it can seem, therefore, not to get ensnarled in this place. It is not worth it. Better to make it on one’s own however perilous that path might be. Accept the hard life of a wandering around nomad sleeping outside: The suffering may be great, but this suffering is yours – it is yours to own. You can wallow in it because this place, this life, is yours, no one can take it from you, no one can throw you overboard because you are here of yourself.
That desire to be free of such doubts is a desire for freedom itself. When one’s emotional well being in the intimate, stable, settled connections of ordinary life is to some great degree dependent on others then one can almost feel a prisoner in normal life. An inner angst that pervades every semblence of stability in life is to have a great weight chanined to one’s inner being within. One is in every step, one small stumble away from falling over and being crushed by this intolerable weight. Perhaps, for such a person, after a while, it is best to let go and to cut oneself loose from normal life. Yes, it can seem that it is. If you have never known a stable home, nor had trusting, enduring, relationships with those you should love, then why live struggaling to know this unimaginable realm?, if you have never had it, then you will never know it, it is just the way it is. Here comes the justification in taking off. Don’t be dissappointed again by others, it is more secure to rely only on yourself.
But to follow through by fleeing in such a way may in a broader sense sit uncomfortably within. If one is blindly giving into one’s fears by fleeing the intimacy of normal life, then one may carry with them the knowldge that one’s bid for all out autonomy is at it’s heart an action of enduring cowardice. If this was behind the action in taking off, then one may be burdened by an, ultimately, more onerous weight of one’s own weakness. In my experience, flight has, at times, been an instinctive kneejerk responce. It’s impulse would roam around tyrannyously -even in normal times – within the subconscious. Hence, in this instict to flee then there is pain that is trying to be avoided when the prospect of establishing secure, well cultivated, relationships arises. The pain and the fear this induces can override even the strongest of desires in one’s purest of intentions which one had nobly wished to fufill. For instance, one may want love, one’s heart longs for this most fundamental of life fulfilments, but one ends up forever sabotaging one’s chances by retreating when the moment gets close. If love is associated with abuse, because those whom one automatically loved when one was a child were perpetrators of harm, then the sensations one feels onwards in life are likely to be highly conflicted. Consequently one’s fears, and one’s submerged, gnawing, pain will insert their muddled influence upon one’s most pure and essential needs. To live like this is maddening. One is forever refusing oneself what one’s nature is screaming out for from within. To be so fragmented, and to feel so perpetually conflicted, is incredibly wearisome. It is as if one is living through an endless, senseless, battle which only happens because of one’s own blind impulsion implores one to fight, even though no part of this person’s heart desires this insidious engagement. Most crushing is that the more one goes out and tries to fulfil one’s needs, the more violent one’s internal battle becomes; so horribly conflicting it is that one is overwhelmed, and thus the signalled emergency for retreat is enacted in a flash. The only way it can seem that there is to break with this cycle is to all out flee; in this one does not, at least, have to engage in this terrible battle. Best to break off with normal life, the pain that comes in the ordinary relationships of life is just too much. In normal life one cannot escape these, they are rubbed in one’s face at every turn. One wants this too, but one’s fears are too great; and if one cannot possibly shed them then one will never feel at one in ordinary life. Fresh hopes can keep on springing up, but then the associated pain that is intertwined with such hopes keeps coming rumbling back, this hurt is enough to invalidate all such hopes. Therefore an insurmountable obstacle exists, it is as if one is living their life forever on the outside looking in on the world. One is never there, one can never properly connect. Best it can seem to leave this forever, no clinging to normal life just to be a perpetual and isolated outsider. Instead be your own boss, go out on your own. In this world no other person can hurt you, you can only hurt yourself. And that, in my experinece, is a price such a person is willing to pay, for nothing else is worse than someone else crushing one’s fragile emotional pride, that is a stab too much because within that one’s world comes crushing in, for those feelings one had had were also one’ hopes. To live with one’s tenderest hopes of love, of connection, of fulfilment being broken is not endurable even for the strongest will. Such a world is warped and wicked and it will send one insane if these fears have no hope of being overcome.
If the choice is to live in ordinary life, with the sense that one is forever perilously perched on the edge, where one is always one false slip away from doing something wrong that will bring a sudden hellish end to those first, longed for, trappings of sweet security, and what instead comes about is a rejection from those one had thought, for one giddy moment, one could trust, then the end of the world stab of abandonment has happened again. To be expecting this, and to never be able to shake off it’s encroaching sense is the worst thing of all. One is forever seeing dark, obscure, threatening shadows in the purest heartwarming light. Living normally then is a paradox because the more outwardly secure one’s surroundings seem, the more poisonous one feels about it all inside. To lumber around in life with such a hidden, unexpressed pain is a burden. And it is one one feels that one has to hide because one cannot express the teaming nonsensical demons of doubt and anexity that are there within, when for all those in the ordinary world any such rationalisation is beyond all comprehension. To have such fears is to feel desitiute. By taking off and being attached to no one or nothing, then there is no home, no relationship, that one ever again has to lose. To have such a freedom is an allure that comes with the nomadic way of life.
By being one’s own boss, then one is not directly in the clutches of another person. To be beholden to someone else in an intimate way, gives the other the power to effect your own destiny, simply because they have an emotional hold over you that grips at your heart. This grip one feels is not real, it comes from one’s own psychological world, but this grip is an emotional torture of pain and uncertainity since one’s heart can in any, imminent, intense, moment be squashed to a life ending pulp. The pain, the threat, is not literal, but inner emotional pain can be as damaging, or more so, than any genuine inflicted physical pain.
To be alone, puts one in connection with oneself. The greater this connection the better the friend one can be to oneself. But if one is fleeing, and blindly running from one’s unrealised, and worst, fears, then the aloneness one has created is not a healthily established connection with oneself. To be one’s own best friend and to take off into the world must come from a place of love. If one is fleeing from fear then on one’s journey onwards one will be carrying a heavy baggage of frustration and pain; this is exhausting, and it will wear one down. This inner baggage perpetuates hurt, which will erode one’s self worth. The person who lacks self worth cannot know self love, and when this is the case one will never be one’s own best friend since one will never be secure in oneself.