The Middle Ground

By Jordan Norris

I think that many of us nowadays search for personal happiness in other people. Being in a great relationship and finding the middle ground between complete over-dependence and entire self-absorption and absence can be an arduous task. It’s essentially a balancing act – trying to practice and acknowledge the areas that can leave you hanging onto everybody else’s opinion, or becoming stoic and lifeless. However, the middle ground is achievable.

Many people enter into relationships or commitments, expecting them to rid all worry and provide eternal paradise. People think that a night out is ruined if they don’t end up chewing the face off someone. By looking for satisfaction or happiness that way, you will always be disappointed. Whether you get with that person or you don’t, the real problem that’s occurring is that, as a society, we feel the need to look for validation in others and not within ourselves.

This state of mind can be escaped by the realisation that true happiness cannot be found in others.

As cliché as it sounds, it’s within ourselves, and it’s all about reclaiming the dependency we put on others and focusing solely on our own person.

We’re conditioned to seek happiness in the things around us. I think answers lie in realising that people are not here to fulfil our voids, and their jobs aren’t to make us happy – I mean, they’re probably going through the same thing themselves, right? The only thing that can continuously make us happy, whether we can accept the fact or not, is pretty much ourselves.


I can’t stress the importance of being comfortable on your own. Sometimes, it’s nice to just sit down and listen to your own thoughts. Self-doubts and insecurities – sadly, we can’t expect someone else to come along and wave a wand and fix them for us. It’s also not uncommon for people to hide in their comfort zones. But humans maintain levels of unbelievable potential. Experiences in life, new or old, should be embraced. It’s nice to learn things from ourselves and our abilities. They say you learn something new every day, and right they are. The joy we receive from doing things well and learning from previous mistakes ultimately leads to us being less dependent on others for fulfilment.

Also, we have a tendency to complain, guys. Don’t we? Outlook is an incredibly important factor. The more we try to believe things, the more likely they are to happen.

I hate little cliché sayings like ‘everything happens for a reason’ and ‘every cloud has a silver lining’, but if we try to see the good in everything, then perhaps ultimately we will see the positive before jumping straight to the negative.

Become aware of how these negative patterns repeat, and then train yourself to break them. Sure, we should rely on others at times, but overdependent is where there is a problem. Over-dependency is when you find yourself struggling to return to emotional independence when needed. For a lot of people, it means worrying and obsessing over what everyone thinks of them, especially in a social setting.