About 60 million Americans are lonely. That's about 1 in four people in American feel lonely. Look around you and one in every four people you see are lonely. Maybe perhaps you are that one person in four. But let's not just think about loneliness. When was the last time anyone told you how much you meant to them? In fact, do you have anyone in your life you think would be able to tell you that you are very special to them? How about this - when was the last time you told those close to you how much they mean to you? I think we go through life day in and day out, without ever really getting those meaningful messages that help make our day and move along. There's often the remark that when people ask you, "how are you?" you're suppose to respond with, "you feel fine." No one apparently wants to hear how you really are, people just want to acknowledge your presence and move on. It's the same thing when we talk about the weather, often meaningless conversation.
We live in a world where there is a lot of noise, a lot of superficial messages, a lot of meaningless conversation. Or even worse, we are bombarded by negative messages, "you're not good enough," "you're not strong enough," "you're not smart enough," "you're not pretty enough." We're living in a consumerist world that feeds on these negative messages, and then attempt to sell you something to make you feel like you're okay - "Not pretty enough? Buy our beauty project to make you pretty." Truth is, despite all of this, we live in a world where there are a lot of folks living in quiet desperation, going to work (if you're lucky enough to be working), coming home, watching TV, listening to music, drinking, doing whatever it takes to forget about the fact that deep down inside you long for something more than what your current life offers you.
So how about we do something about it? It means getting out of your comfort zone and deciding to do something deliberate. Gandhi said, be the change you want to see in the world. If you want the world to be different, you are going to be the one to do it. Let's replace meaningless conversations with meaningful ones. Let's replace negative messages with positive ones. Let's build relationships and create meaning, let's pull ourselves out of dull routine that has become the life of so many.
I started a project to do exactly this. It is an opportunity for you to be that change and all it takes is four very simple steps. You don't have to do all four, but you should at least do the first one. The project is called #sharetheluvproject and you can find out more here: http://www.sharetheluvproject.com/ Those positive, meaningful messages, I call luv messages and you share them with as many people as you want on your social media (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, etc.). Share them especially with those who may be more lonely and isolated, those who probably won't get a luv message. It's at least one in four people that you know. And when you share your luv message, add in the hashtag, #sharetheluvproject, and encourage them to pay it forward and share luv messages with others. This is an easy thing to do, it doesn't take much of your time, and you can make a difference - it's more than just a hashtag to show you care, it's a luv message. Check out http://www.sharetheluvproject.com for the other 3 steps. If you're tired of those meaningless conversation and negative messages, do something to make a difference - share the luv!
- Love is like a virus. It can happen to anybody at any time - Maya Angelou