Every human on this earth shares a common link. Although some families are extremely close, spend weekends, eat meals, and go on trips together no matter how young or old its members might be, others are more distant, only able to text each other throughout the day, live in different parts of the country, and are pursuing very different paths in life, both situations share a distinct connection. The same goes for individuals who grew up in deeply troubled or broken homes, foster homes, or none at all, yet still, survive and thrive on the support of friends, mentors, teachers, and kind strangers—all are able to exist because of an unshakable love.
Nearly every family or group of people who care about each other form an infinitely and increasingly complex network with more to them than meets the eye, yet one does not take away the value or worth of the other simply because of such differences. When you think of those that you care about, what comes to mind? Happy, sad, crazy, hilarious memories? A certain smell or feeling that makes you smile or your heart flutter? These simple moments of life are rooted in man's natural desire and need for love, whether that be platonic, romantic, sexual, practical, familial, or universal.
Throughout history, and as studied by psychologists and medical professionals alike, the pursuit of feeling cared for by others has been one of mankind's most notable determinants of happiness; yet, as life grows ever-busier, we often fail to acknowledge the parallel necessity present alongside wanting to feel loved: the need to love and care for others, as well.
When asked what makes us most happy, why is it that most immediate answers include self-oriented things like "money" or "feeling loved," instead of "helping others" or "bringing others joy"? Countless studies and TEDTalks have addressed this question and found that even the smallest acts of service produce joy and happiness equivalent to doing larger ones. Everyone has days where they need to vent to others, laugh, cry, talk, or just listen. Remember that each day is a new day to do this, for both yourself and others.
Whether you still live at home, have your own place, or have never had a place to call home, know that there is someone on this earth who cares about you, and regardless of if you've had a good, bad, incredible, frustrating, or average day, call, text, or simply walk over to someone you love and talk to them. Ask them how their day was, if anything special happened or if they need anything, and tell them you love them, because chances are they could use or appreciate the comfort of you, too.